17th Aug 2022

Dublin nationalises Anglo Irish Bank

  • The Irish minister of finance says Anglo Irish will continue to be a 'going concern' (Photo: EUobserver)

The Irish government announced Thursday (15 January) night its intention to nationalise Anglo Irish Bank in the face of large deposit withdrawals in recent days.

It also said in a statement that it was ditching proposals to invest €1.5 billion of taxpayers' money in the bank - the country's third largest lender.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

This latest move ends weeks of government attempts to find a private buyer and was triggered by fears that the bank would shortly declare itself insolvent, leaving the government with massive bills as its deposit guarantee scheme announced last month kicked in.

Minister for finance Brian Lenihan said the bank would "continue to trade normally as a going concern."

Analysts believe however that the bank, highly exposed to Ireland's property crash, would be wound down over time, the Financial Times reports.

Trading was suspended Friday after the bank's shares closed down 10.8 per cent at 20 cents compared to a high of more than €17 in May 2007.

The bank has also recently been embroiled in a lending scandal involving its chairman Sean Fitzpatrick, who had concealed €87 million worth of private loans made to him by the bank over the last eight years.

Mr Fitzpatrick stepped down just before Christmas.

Anglo Irish is the latest European bank to be nationalised as a result the recent financial turmoil.

The British government nationalised Northern Rock and Bradford & Bingley last year and also has a 75 percent stake in Royal Bank of Scotland.

On the continent, Fortis became a headline causality of the current turmoil and received a partial nationalisation.

Deutsche Bank stability shaken by sauerkraut

Meanwhile, shares in Deutsche Bank tumbled on Thursday (15 January) after investors learned that the bank's chief executive, Josef Ackermann, had made a brief visit to hospital Wednesday having rapidly devoured a meal of sausage and sauerkraut.

Mr Ackermann said he became ill after a bank reception in Berlin, having spent the day explaining the bank's extremely poor fourth quarter figures and first postwar loss to analysts and journalists.

"At the end of the reception I quickly ate two sausages and sauerkraut, then I felt unwell," he told German newspaper Bild. "I had the whole day crammed full of meetings. I unfortunately did not eat anything and hardly drank anything."

"I will look after myself better in the future," he continued.

The bank's shares rallied again Thursday afternoon.

Conditions met for German nuclear extension, officials say

Conditions have been met for the German government to allow a temporary lifetime extension of three remaining nuclear reactors, according to the Wall Street Journal, as the country is facing a likely shortage of gas this winter.


Is this strange summer a moment of change?

It is a strange, strange summer. The war in Ukraine continues, 60 percent of Europe is in danger of drought, and Covid is still around and could rebound in the autumn. At the same time, everyone is desperate for normalcy.

News in Brief

  1. Tens of thousands of Jews quit Russia since start of war
  2. Russia says GDP forecasts better than expected
  3. Spain 'hopeful' for new gas pipeline
  4. German troops return to Bosnia over instability fears
  5. Next UK PM candidates reject Scottish independence push
  6. Russia will not allow British spy plane overflight
  7. Discrimination in Germany remains high, new figures show
  8. US weighs plan to revive Iran nuclear deal

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic prime ministers: “We will deepen co-operation on defence”
  2. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBConstruction workers can check wages and working conditions in 36 countries
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic and Canadian ministers join forces to combat harmful content online
  4. European Centre for Press and Media FreedomEuropean Anti-SLAPP Conference 2022
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers write to EU about new food labelling
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersEmerging journalists from the Nordics and Canada report the facts of the climate crisis

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us