Bonus supertax raises nothing

A supertax introduced to curb bankers’ bonuses has done just that and returned no money to the exchequer as the covered banks have stopped paying employees cash bonuses.

In a response to a parliamentary question from Sinn Féin’s Pearse Doherty, the Minister for Finance, Micheal Noonan, said the 90% banker bonus supertax had recovered no money.

“I am advised by the covered institutions who have disclosed information that the total amount raised from the excess bank remuneration charge in respect of bonuses is zero,” the minister said.

A previous report into bonuses paid at Bank of Ireland in 2010 had led to the bank volunteering to pay €2m in compensation for misleading the Dáil in responses to parliamentary questions.

Following the scandal, a report into Bank of Ireland bonuses revealed that a member of the bank’s senior executive team had been due a payment of €200,000 in 2012. It is understood this bonus had not been paid.

A spokesperson for the Department of Finance said the individual concerned had left the bank.

A Bank of Ireland spokesperson said they would not be paying bonuses unless they were contractually obliged to do so.

“The bank is in compliance with agreements with the State which prohibit bonuses save in exceptional circumstances such as meeting obligations on foot of a court order or pre-existing contractual obligations.”

AIB has also said it will not be paying any bonuses, as has the IBRC and Permanent TSB.

Ulster Bank did not rule out paying bonuses. It said it did not wish to comment on its employees’ remuneration packages but stressed their CEO, Jim Brown, does not wish to be considered for a bonus in the new year.

“We don’t comment on the individual remuneration arrangements of our staff. On Jul 5 this year, we announced that Jim Brown had informed the Ulster Bank board that he did not wish to be considered for an annual bonus award for 2012,” a spokesperson said.


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