Anglo Tapes

Tuesday 29 July 2014

Abuse the bank guarantee, don't get caught – David Drumm

Anglo bank chief's extraordinary comments to staff after bailout

Published 25/06/2013|04:00

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ANGLO Irish Bank boss David Drumm laughed about "abusing" the bank guarantee and warned his executives not to be caught abusing it, the Anglo Tapes reveal.

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Drumm is also heard giggling as one of his executives sings the German national anthem as deposits from Germany flow into Anglo as a result of the bank guarantee.

It's the first time the former Anglo chief executive is brought directly into the controversy.

His language and casual attitude to the crisis will be found extraordinary by readers.

The latest revelations from the Irish Independent's 'Inside Anglo' investigation display a casual, even reckless, attitude at the bank during the financial crash.

Mr Drumm can be heard laughing at the financial regulator's concerns about being seen internationally to be "abusing" the bank guarantee in late 2008.

"We won't do anything blatant, but . . . we have to get the money in . . . get the f***in' money in, get it in," he tells his senior manager, John Bowe.

At the time, European leaders including Germany's Angela Merkel and UK chancellor Alistair Darling were alarmed at how the guarantee could affect their banking systems.

But Mr Bowe sang a "comedy" version of the anthem 'Deutschland Uber Alles' and talked about giving "two fingers" to British concern.

Mr Drumm and Mr Bowe are heard laughing at the concerns that the movement of money was causing a rift between Ireland and its EU partners.

Drumm declares to his colleague: "So f***in' what. Just take it anyway . . . stick the fingers up."

In an earlier recording, Mr Bowe laughed with another colleague, Peter Fitzgerald, about nationalisation of the bank.

They described the prospect as "fantastic" – so that they could keep their jobs and become civil servants.

This is the second tranche of conversations to be published by the Irish Independent, revealing an astonishing banking culture in the collapse of late 2008.

Yesterday, we revealed how Anglo executives who negotiated with the Central Bank lied about the true extent of losses at the institution in the hope the State would write them an open cheque.

The publication of the Anglo Tapes sparked fresh calls for a comprehensive banking inquiry across the political spectrum.

- Paul Williams  Special Correspondent

Irish Independent

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