Saturday 10 December 2016

Bank Inquiry must shed light on guarantee night

Published 23/04/2015 | 02:30

"The Taoiseach of the day" Brian Cowen

The night of the Bank Guarantee, which effectively guaranteed the staggering sum of €440bn in the Irish banks, remains one of the enduring mysteries of our times.

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We do know that on that fateful night, September 29, 2008, the Taoiseach of the day, Brian Cowen, the Finance Minister, Brian Lenihan, the bosses of the pillar banks and a whole swathe of senior civil servants and highly-paid financial advisers were in various locations trying to stave off a 'run' on the banks as a result of a complete loss of confidence in Ireland by the international financial community.

We also know that the agreement of the cabinet was obtained by a so-called 'incorporeal' meeting - in other words the other ministers were not present but were phoned early in the morning to approve the guarantee.

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