Bailout bill: Cost of Anglo may be less than expected

CENTRAL Bank governor Patrick Honohan has said that the bailout cost regarding Anglo Irish Bank may well amount to less than recent estimates have suggested.

Mr Honohan said the Government’s recent decision to split the nationalised bank “comes as a welcome relief” and that the proposed structure “will provide a secure home for Anglo’s depositors, insulating them from the process of running-off the loan asset over time”.

Earlier this month, the Government decided to split Anglo into a state- backed deposit bank, containing the company’s existing deposit book, and a standalone asset recovery bank aimed at working out Anglo’s non-NAMA bound assets to the best advantage of the Irish taxpayer.

The final cost of saving Anglo could run to around €27bn according to some domestic sources, while international credit ratings agency Standard & Poor’s recently suggested the total cost may reach €35bn.

“The Government has asked the Central Bank to determine the appropriate levels of capital needed in the two institutions into which Anglo is being split.

“There are some technicalities involved and, while I don’t want to anticipate the exact numbers to be published, it may be worth explaining that the type of capital assessment we’re doing for Anglo is different from those we’ve already conducted for the other Irish banks – due to the nature of the split-bank structure, the goal of working out assets and of de-risking the balance sheet and the prospect of a change in the regulatory status of the asset recovery entity over time,” Mr Honohan said yesterday.


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