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Iranian official admits government manipulated stock market

Tehran Stock Exchange
Tehran Stock Exchange

Reporting by PMOI/MEK

Iran, April 19, 2021—Mohammad Ali Dehghan Dehnavi, president of the Securities and Exchange Organization, recently admitted that the regime has supplied a large part of its budget deficit from profits made through the manipulation of the stock market.

On April 16, Dehnavi said on the Clubhouse social media network, “The stock market has provided 6.8 trillion rials (approx. $28 billion) for the economy; the stock market has been the government’s source of income last year.”

Dehnavi’s explicit acknowledgement of the government’s manipulation of the stock market only confirms what was known all along. The state-run Resalat newspaper reported on April 17 that these remarks explain one of the main reasons behind “the disturbing shrinking of the people’s tablecloths,” “a ten-year record in economic divide,” “terrible rise of housing prices,” “decline of people’s purchasing power,” and “poultry priced at 240,000 rials.”

Iran’s stock market is an instrument of cruel looting of the people. The regime tried to compensate its budget deficit in 2020 and both regime’s president Hassan Rouhani and supreme leader Ali Khamenei encouraged the general public to participate in “productive investments” such as cooperatives and the stock market. Rouhani advertised a lot about the stock market and people's need to invest in this market. On April 22, 2020, Rouhani said: "In the year of the ‘production leap,’ the capital market is one of the ways of our economic movement.”

But soon the stock market bubble burst. Tehran Stock Exchange’s main index plummeted by more than 36,000 points on January 24, marking the acceleration of a collapse that has followed a bubble growth during the summer. On January 25, the index further collapsed by 18,000 points in the opening hours. The market had seen another 40,000-point drop on January 16.

The downturn triggered many protests across the country by small investors who had lost their assets and lifesavings in the stock market based by hollow promises by senior regime officials. Now the reason is clear, Rouhani’s government only sought to earn money by digging his hands into the pockets of the people. What has now left for the people is nothing but anger and loss of their wealth.

Iranian regime leaders are plundering Iranian people’s wealth to fund their nuclear and missile program, repressive apparatus, terrorist proxies in the region such as Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthis in Yemen, and Mobilization Forces in Iraq.

According to the state-run Jahane Sanat daily on April 17, due to these criminal policies, “Iran’s economy has disintegrated.” Also, the daily Arman wrote that “the social wounds are deeper and deeper.”

With looting of people’s wealth and assets, maybe the regime can compensate its budget deficit and dampen the economic tension for a short period. But the disastrous social consequences of its policies will be waiting for the regime down the road at a much bigger scale. According to daily Arman on April 17, “This is a dangerous situation, and we must find a solution. Otherwise, the people will look for other solutions that have bad consequences for the whole establishment.”

The state-run media clearly warn of the powder keg situation of Iran’s society. A society that has nothing to lose and only seeks change.