Bloxham chiefs ‘will face grilling’

The Central Bank has no immediate plans to interview Tadhg Gunnell regarding his role in the fall of Bloxham Stockbrokers.

A spokesperson for the financial regulator yesterday said it was still too early to suggest a timetable or duration for the probe into financial irregularities at the State’s oldest stockbroking firm.

However, one source suggested it would be “very surprising” if the regulator didn’t eventually grill Bloxham’s chief partners — and Mr Gunnell, in particular, who was in charge of finance and compliance — as part of the overall investigations.

The role of Bloxham’s auditor, Deloitte — which has so far declined to comment on the matter — is also being examined.

The Central Bank said it will continue its investigation into Bloxham via its stockbroking regulation unit — suggesting this is a standalone issue in the Irish market at present.

It is unclear how long it may take and whether it might lead to a criminal investigation, in time.

It has been estimated the initial investigation could take a number of months.

Accountancy firm KPMG is assisting with the overall probe.

This week’s news has been viewed as a minor positive for Bloxham’s outstanding creditors — who include the likes of National Irish Bank and the Revenue Commissioners. They could stand to recoup some of what is owed to them.

This is due to the €6m-plus being paid by Davy stockbrokers for Bloxham’s profitable private client and asset management divisions.

NIB is owed a reported €20m by Bloxham, and ranks as the firm’s single largest creditor.


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