| 5.6°C Dublin

What it says in the papers: business pages


HERE are the main business stories from this morning's papers:

Irish Independent:

***Facebook’s total employment is set to hit 1,000 people in Ireland this year as it submits official plans for a €200m data centre in Meath.

The move will make the social media giant one of Ireland’s biggest tech employers and represents a near-doubling in its Irish base over the last year as revenue and profits grow.

The new centre will be built near Clonee, close to the Meath-Dublin border.

***Senior bankers in AIB and Bank of Ireland explicitly sought a broad bank guarantee when they approached the Government for help in 2008, former Department of Finance official Kevin Cardiff will claim.

Mr Cardiff, who is going before the Oireachtas Banking Inquiry on Thursday, is expected to claim he warned then Taoiseach Brian Cowen about acceding to their request. He is to say he told Mr Cowen the banks would be laughing at them, were they to introduce a blanket guarantee.

Mr Cardiff was the senior banking official at the Department of Finance on the night of the guarantee, September 29, 2008.

***Any changes to the iconic Clerys department store will be decided by planning authorities – but experts say dozens of international retailers are already eying space in the building.  

Sources told the Irish Independent that the new owners hope to refurbish the site – including by opening the rear of the building on to Marlborough Street,  which is set for a major revamp thanks to a new Luas tram line that will connect the rear of the   property with Grafton Street on the south of the city.

The idea is to develop space for large retailers as well as office and leisure facilities in the historic Clerys building.

Irish Times:

***Political gaps are opening up in the US over how to respond to an overhaul of tax rules by the OECD which could have major implications for Ireland, the Irish Times reports.

The Paris-based OECD is to introduce country-by-country reporting standards for states in an effort to reduce base erosion and profit shifting by large companies.

The Republican leaders of the two tax-writing committees in the US congress have written to treasury secretary Jacob Lew saying that they are concerned about the new reporting standards which could have implications for multinationals that use Ireland as a centre for their international tax planning.

***The Government is to hold economic talks with employers, unions and other stakeholder groups next month that will concentrate on the outline fiscal plan for 2016 that was set out in the spring statement, the Irish times reports.

According to the newspaper the meeting will take place in the Printworks in Dublin Castle on July 16th and 17th and is aimed at facilitating engagement with representative groups and civic society organisations.

The talks are seen as a means of a broadening consultation on the upcoming budget and will be followed by a public call for written budget submissions by the start of September.

***Local authorities have cut the interest on variable rate mortgages by 0.2pc for homeowners after a decision by the board of the Housing Financial Authority.

The move will result savings for 13,700 households, with those on a typical mortgage of €100,000 saving €17 per month.

The move was  welcomed by Environment Minister Alan Kelly, who also welcomed the HFA’s decision to lower its non-mortgage variable lending rate by 0.25pc from the start of July.

Irish Examiner:

***Business and consumer groups have called on the Government to launch a probe into the control that Allied Irish Banks and bank of Ireland have in the banking sector and to consider breaking up AIB to stimulate market competition, the Irish Examiner reports.

The Chairman of the Consumers Association of Ireland Michael Kilcoyne told the paper that he was looking for the Competition Commissioner to examine the possible break up of AIB before the Government starts selling down its€13.3bn equity and debt stakes in the organisation.

The call comes after the Economic and Social research Institute flagged concerns about whether the banks are meeting the needs of businesses and consumers in a report last week.

***With the US Federal Reserve expected to leave interest rates on hold this week, the market will be focusing on policymakers for clear signals on when the central bank will make its first interest rate hike in nearly a decade.

World shares ended last week on a muted note as Greece’s situation took a turn for the worse when the IMF’s delegation walked out of negotiations in Brussels citing “major differences” with Athens over how to save the country from bankruptcy.

Wall Street’s top bond dealers, who just three months ago had a June move pencilled in, now expect the Fed to begin raising rates in September, followed by another hike before the end of the year.

***Germany gave its most explicit warning yet that Greece could eventually leave the euro as European Union officials try to hammer out a last-minute deal over bailout funds.

“The shadow of a Greek exit from the euro zone is becoming increasingly perceptible,” German Economy Minister and Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel wrote in a Bild newspaper opinion column published today. “Greece’s game theorists are gambling the future of their country. And Europe’s too.”

European leaders from German Chancellor Angela Merkel to EU President Donald Tusk have voiced growing exasperation with Greece’s brinkmanship that has pushed Europe’s most-indebted country to the edge of insolvency.

Online Editors