Padraic's Feed
Jan 16, 2014

Irish debt catching up to euro zone mainstream

By Padraic Halpin and John Geddie

LONDON, Jan 16 (Reuters/IFR) – From bailout and near
bankruptcy, Ireland has staged such a remarkable turnaround that
its debt is now on a solid path towards France and Belgium -
catching up with countries seen as safe bets when it was shunned
by the market three years ago.

After a storming return to bond markets last week – meeting
almost half its funding target for 2014 – Ireland is now eyeing
an upgrade by Moody’s, possibly as soon as Friday, that would
unleash a further wave of investment.

Dec 19, 2013

Irish economy on sounder footing as bailout ends

DUBLIN, Dec 19 (Reuters) – Ireland’s economy grew more than
twice as fast as expected in the third quarter, thanks to
buoyant construction and investment, putting it on a sounder
footing as it emerges from an international bailout.

After becoming the first euro zone member to complete its
rescue programme last week, Ireland is counting on a lift in
construction and consumer spending to spur on its tentative
recovery next year.

Dec 17, 2013

Ireland lays out post-bailout blueprint to cut debt

DUBLIN (Reuters) – Ireland laid out a fiscal blueprint for the next seven years on Tuesday to confirm its bailout exit and show that its economy can grow enough to cut its debt by a quarter by the end of the decade.

Dublin has turned down a backup credit line with enough debt-market funding to cover costs until 2015. Now it is keen to prove to investors that it will maintain its fiscal rigor, while offering hope to the austerity-weary that the worst is over.

Dec 16, 2013

Ireland eyes 10-year bond issue, easing of austerity

DUBLIN (Reuters) – Ireland, the first euro zone member to successfully exit its bailout, will return to debt markets with an issue of 10-year paper in early 2014 and may have space to ease austerity in its next budget, its finance minister said.

Ireland completed its European Union/International Monetary Fund bailout program last week and its economic progress and debt sales will be closely monitored for pointers on how easily other bailout recipients Portugal, Greece and Cyprus may fare.

Dec 16, 2013

Bruiser Boucher, Irish banking’s great survivor

DUBLIN (Reuters) – In March 2011 Bank of Ireland had four months to find 4.2 billion euros or the government would seize control. The country’s central bank was issued powers to fire senior financiers. The outlook seemed bleak for Richie Boucher.

While analysts and commentators sharpened their knives, Boucher – the bank’s burly chief executive, described by one MP as “a hard bastard with a hide like a rhino” – started setting up meetings.

Dec 13, 2013

Irish debt trio eased the way to bailout exit

DUBLIN, Dec 13 (Reuters) – Six months after Ireland was
rescued from financial crisis with an international aid package,
some investors were treating the country as an emerging market.

The reputation of the former triple-A credit rated sovereign
was in tatters, and it fell to a team of three officials in the
Irish debt management office to try and turn its image around.

Dec 4, 2013

Post-bailout Ireland turns focus to banking hangover

DUBLIN/LONDON, Dec 4 (Reuters) – With liberation from
Ireland’s three-year bailout getting closer by the day, the
banks which drove the country into the arms of the EU and IMF
are once again taking centre stage as Dublin tries to turn 11
billion euros ($15 billion) of its banking assets into hard

That mission got off to a promising start on Wednesday with
the announcement of the sale of 1.8 billion euros of the state’s
Bank of Ireland (BoI) preference shares.

Dec 4, 2013

Bank of Ireland to repay state 1.8 billion euros

DUBLIN, Dec 4 (Reuters) – Bank of Ireland plans to
raise 580 million euros ($788 million) of equity on Wednesday as
part of a deal to repay 1.8 billion euros of state-owned
preference shares and hand the government a timely boost.

The plan to redeem the preference shares issued when the 15
percent state-owned bank was rescued in 2009 cuts its reliance
on the government less than two weeks before Ireland becomes the
first euro zone country to exit an EU/IMF bailout.

Dec 2, 2013

Central bank review dents Bank of Ireland’s capital cushion

DUBLIN, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Bank of Ireland’s capital
adequacy ratios suffered a sharp drop on Monday after the Irish
central bank said it needed to make extra provisions for loan
losses as part of an industry-wide review.

Bank of Ireland said it was not required to raise additional
capital after the health check, carried out ahead of Ireland’s
exit from an EU/IMF bailout scheme, but noted that it was still
in talks with the central bank about the results of the review.

Nov 28, 2013

Irish mortgage data suggests housing debt crisis may be easing

DUBLIN, Nov 28 (Reuters) – The number of Irish mortgages in
arrears for over 90 days rose at a slower pace in the third
quarter and fewer borrowers fell into early stage arrears in a
tentative sign that the home loan crisis may be stabilising.

Households’ bad debts are a major impediment to Ireland’s
hopes of economic recovery as it comes out of an international
bailout next month, deterring spending and raising questions
over whether banks will need more capital.