Former Ulster Bank chief 'regrets' assumption that property market would keep growing

One of Ulster Bank's former senior bankers says he "regrets" assuming that the property market would never collapse.

Michael Torpey says the entire banking sector lost sight of the possibility that the market could experience a so-called "hard landing".

Former Ulster Bank chief 'regrets' assumption that property market would keep growing

Mr Torpey, the former finance director for the Ulster Bank group, has been questioned about the bank's offering of 100% mortgages.

He said Ulster Bank's actions in the market are something he regrets:

"We had a growth strategy which sought to compete in the marketplace. The assumptions we made, unfortunately, were the wrong assumptions," he said.

"It is unfortunate in every respect - and it's something I very much regret - that we didn't challenge, sufficiently, on the variety of assumptions that underpinned the expectations of continuing growth in the market."

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