Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Can we have some more transparency please?

Slí Eile: In regard to Anglo-Irish Bank claims have been made that: (i) winding up would cost Ireland €70bn and (ii) defaulting on some €15bn in 'senior bond debt' for Anglo-Irish would have systemic and negative impact across the entire financial system. It would help if someone could guide the taxpayers of Ireland to (a) a full set of meaningful and informative accounts of the 'state owned' Bank and (b) a breakdown of lenders and investors as distinct from deposit holders and others with the claimed total liability of near €70bn. A search of the Annual Report of Anglo for 2009 shows an Annual Report here. On page 38 of the Annual Report a total liability of €97bn is reported. This breaks into €51bn in 'customer accounts' (of the great, the good and the humble), €20.5bn in deposits from banks and €17.3bn in 'debt securities in issue'. A further €5bn is in subordinated liabilities and 'other capital instruments'. How much of these liabilities are, ultimately, to the Irish Government, other Irish banks, investors and lenders from outside the State? What concentration of liability rests with a small circle of high-wealth individuals?
Could the people who have to pick up the bill please have a full, transparent and detailed account of who owns what to who. If we are to gamble with €20bn plus in capital transfers and thereby add to EU-measured Government debt, could we have a full cost-benefit analysis accesible to the Oireachtas and civil society? Too much to ask?

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