Taoiseach calls for bank action on variable rates
Taoiseach Enda Kenny expects Finance Minister Michael Noonan to convey "very loudly" the Government's dissatisfaction with high variable rates.
Mr Kenny described the refusal by some banks to slash rates as a "very serious matter", adding that the issue would not be tolerated.
"We are not happy nor is it acceptable that you should have a position that banks are charging mortgages and mortgage holders a much higher rate than they are able to borrow right now, he said.
He said Mr Noonan was going to call in banks and he expected them to hear his message "very loudly".
"Clearly it's in everybody's interest that this sense of unfairness is not carried on."
Mr Kenny also left the door open for a mechanism to prevent further strike action by unions. This is being considered in the pay talks.
"The least strikes we have the better obviously and when you have an environment where that [mechanism] can be accommodated, it is in everybody's interest."
The Taoiseach was speaking at the launch of a jobs initiative in the Carlow Enterprise office with Cabinet colleagues Richard Bruton and Ged Nash.
The comments came as a new independent group met in Mr Kenny's Mayo constituency as part of plans to field election candidates.
The group, which aims to uproot Fine Gael TDs, is modelled on a US-style caucus system whereby it will attempt to sign up lists of independent voters.