Sunday 18 March 2018

What is says in the papers: business pages

Michael Cogley

Michael Cogley

Here are the business stories you need to know about this morning:

Irish Independent

* State-rescued Permanent TSB is making secret "bonus" payments to key staff, it has been confirmed.

A select group of staff are getting payments that work out at up to 11pc on top of their salaries, to stop them leaving for another job. Around 100 people are getting the top-ups, it can be revealed.

The bank insisted the payments were not bonuses, but unions said they were unaware of the payments - and that they appear to be bonuses.

* Key industry gauges indicate this year will be the best Christmas for shops and businesses since 2008, business body Ibec has reported.

Irish shoppers are likely to spend €4.05bn this year, up from €3.92bn in December 2014, it expects. That is an annual rise of over 3.5pc or €130m.

Households will spend an average of €2,450 in the month, Ibec unit Retail Ireland said, approximately €600 more than any other month of the year.

* Economic performance remains uneven throughout the country, despite declining unemployment in all regions, EY (Ernst & Young) has claimed.

In its latest assessment of the Irish economy, the global consultancy group said urban centres have experienced much more rapid growth than elsewhere.

It pointed out that unemployment in Dublin and the commuter belt in the mid-east fell to 8pc and 8.1pc respectively by the end of September. But other regions haven't fared quite as well, particularly in the south east and midlands, where unemployment is still higher.

The Irish Times

* The Banking Inquiry, which is investigating the cause of the collapse of the Irish banks, is unhappy with the report it agreed upon on Sunday.

According to a report in the Irish Times the majority of committee members are unhappy with the report they agreed on following lengthy debates and deadline extensions.

It says that the committee spent last night reviewing the 450-page document and approved it despite the fact that some chapters were causing 'significant concern'.

* A number of leading property developers have told the European Commission that Nama will cause a state of crisis by the time the asset management agency finishes up in 2020.

They argue that very few non-Nama developers will still be around by that stage as they won't be able to compete with Nama on level terms due to its State-ownership.

The developers maintain that many of those not supported by Nama will leave the market due to the inability to compete.

* Despite heavy losses this year, insurance giant RSA is targeting a return to profits next year after financial issues emerged in 2013.

The firm filed losses of €176.6m, down significantly from 2013's losses of €234.7m.

The bid to return to profitability is part of a three-year operational plan that concludes at the close of 2017.

Irish Examiner

* The Banking Enquiry is to advise the Government to take legal action against the European Central Bank for not allowing Ireland to burn bondholders five years ago according to a report in the Irish Examiner.

The report also says that two committee members refused to sign the report with other members accusing them of acting 'naked politically'.

Following a marathon debate last night members signed off on the report which also included a contentious findings and recommendations section.

* Clanwilliam, the healthcare and technology services company, has acquired Irish software company, Claimsure, in a deal worth in the region of €12m.

The deal will see Dublin-based Clanwilliam acquire Claimsure, a company that was developed to help hospitals claim payments from insureres.

Claimsure's software is in use in over 50 hospitals across Ireland both in the HSE and the private sector.

* Major risks around infrastructure are posing a threat to the future of the Irish economy according to Ernst & Young's latest economic outlook.

The professional services firm expands the rate of economic growth to slow next year to 4.3pc, down from this year's rate of 5.8pc.

The company says that record low interest rates and the weakness of the euro added to falling oil prices and US and UK recovery has played a major role int he Irish economy.

Online Editors

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