Central Bank governor urges patience over tracker probe

Central Bank governor Philip Lane urged patience with the ongoing tracker mortgage scandal investigation while in Cork yesterday but conceded the public needed more regular updates.

He said that the review of tracker mortgages involved two million accounts, and to ensure a fair outcome for consumers, the review had to be painstaking.

Following briefings at UCC and Cork Chamber, Mr Lane declined to comment on whether the number of customers put on the wrong tracker could be upwards of 20,000.

He said: “When we finalise the whole examination, then we can talk about the aggregate numbers and so on.”

He did not rule out further sanctions and fines for some of the lenders being investigated.

One lender has been fined €4.5m and directed that its customers receive appropriate redress and compensation — by November 2016, this had amounted to €5.8m. Two other enforcement cases are currently ongoing.

He said: “As we assess each bank in the examination, we will make the assessment of what type of enforcement actions are needed.”

Regular updates were desirable, he said, but difficult because of resources.

Mr Lane said: “There is a limit to how many we can take off running the project versus writing reports. But there is a balance and we will communicate fairly soon around updates.”

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