Saturday 20 January 2018

AIB's new golden boy keeps his mortgages at rival bank

Nick Webb

Nick Webb

AIB golden boy Bernard Byrne faces excruciating embarrassment this weekend over the revelations that he holds a mortgage with some of his bank's biggest rivals.

Byrne, who is in charge of the Irish retail business, obviously fancied the better value being offered by other banks as he has had mortgages registered with Ulster Bank, First Active, Irish Life, Anglo and even Bank of Ireland.

Byrne is not the first top banker to be left red-faced over their personal financial arrangements. Former bank of Ireland governor Richard Burrows was revealed to hold a €76,000 mortgage with his big rival AIB back in 2006. The Sunday Independent also revealed ex-AIB chairman Dan O'Connor held mortgages with Bank of Ireland and Bank of Scotland (Ireland).

But perhaps Byrne's choice to borrow from other banks might be quite smart, as AIB isn't exactly the cheapest on the market. Figures from Chrome Insurance show that a customer borrowing €100,000 over 20 years on a property worth €150,000 would pay almost €300 more every year at AIB than they would at NIB for a five-year, fixed-rate loan. That's close to €5,800 more over the term of the loan based on the same margins. AIB is also trumped by Bank of Ireland for variable-rate loans.

Byrne joined AIB as its finance chief from ESB in February 2010 but was moved to become head of "personal and business banking" -- including shifting mortgages to customers here -- during the recent deckchair reshuffle.

AIB declined to comment.

Sunday Indo Business

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