POLITICIANS, businessmen, churches and charities have lost millions in the collapse of AIB shares, a special investigation by the Irish Independent reveals.
The Church of Ireland is nursing one of the biggest losses after its €17.3m investment plummeted to just over €260,000 in the shares wipeout.
Other high-profile figures and organisations who were badly burned include Health Minister Mary Harney and her husband Brian Geoghegan; Fine Gael frontbencher Richard Bruton; Dunnes Stores chief Margaret Heffernan and her brother Frank Dunne; Fianna Fail TD Sean Haughey; and publican Charlie Chawke.
Shares in AIB sank to their lowest level since April last night as news of a new executive chairman failed to ignite a revival.
The almost-nationalised bank spent much of the day trading at 34c, a level not seen for more than six months.
And the bank's shares are likely to fall even further once the Government raises its stake to 90pc in December as part of another €3.7bn cash injection to shore up the bank.
The Irish Independent has learned that the share collapse has all but wiped out millions of euro invested in the bank by Irish churches and charities.
According to the register of AIB's shareholders, the Church of Ireland holds one of the biggest individual shareholding in the bank, with 750,000 shares.
When the shares were trading at their highest price of €23 four years ago, the Church of Ireland's shares were worth as much as €17.3m. But the wipeout means its stake in the bank now stands at just €262,500.
The Catholic Church has also felt the brunt of AIB's failure.
Shares held by the Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Diarmuid Martin, and Archbishop Dermot Clifford on behalf of their dioceses were also badly hit.
Shares owned by Dr Clifford's diocese have fallen in value from €24,495 to €372, while those of Dr Martin's diocese are down from €21,206 to €322.
Well-known charity organisations have also seen their investment almost wiped out.
The Claremont Trust for the education of the deaf and dumb held more than 40,000 shares in the bank. These were valued at €1m at the end of 2006 but are now worth just over €15,000.
Substantial monies were also invested on behalf of the Rotunda Hospital, the Royal Hospital in Donnybrook and Mercers Hospital.
The Catholic Marriage Advisory Centre in Cork, the Samaritans, the Legion of Mary and the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children were also AIB shareholders.
AIB's former chairman Dermot Gleeson is also nursing a huge financial loss on his 400,000 bank shares, which were once worth as much as €6m but have plunged in value to just €140,000.
The bank's former boss Eugene Sheehy also has 2,760 shares, now worth just €966 -- down from a high of €63,480.
Credit unions in Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Leitrim, Castlerea, Co Roscommon and in Dublin are sitting on a total investment loss of more than €100,000 between them.
Politicians also invested in the shares that were once viewed as blue-chip investments.
They include Fine Gael's Richard Bruton; FF TDs Ned O'Keeffe, Sean Haughey, Sean Power and Michael Mulcahy; Mary Harney and MEP Joe Costello.
Well-known business figures include financier Dermot Desmond, who has a modest investment that has fallen from over €12,000 to €189; Margaret Heffernan and her brother Frank Dunne, who each own shares now worth €5,410 down from over €355,000; and Charlie Chawke, whose shares are down from €137,563 to €2,093.
Yesterday's share price fall makes it even more unlikely that the bank will be able to convince any private investors to snap up the new shares it plans to issue next month.
The bank is pricing the shares at 50c a piece, or almost 50pc more than they were changing hands for yesterday.
The National Pension Reserve Fund -- essentially a rainy-day fund to pay for Ireland's future pensions -- has agreed to buy any shares that aren't taken up by the market.
Finance Minister Brian Lenihan hopes the State will wind down its stake in the bank over time to realise a "healthy" profit, but this is likely to take a long time.
Counting the cost of share collapse
|Name of shareholder||Number of shares||Highest value €||Today's value €|
|Church Body Church of Ireland||750,000||17.3m||262,500|
|Rector Monkstown Parish Church Dublin||51,800||1.2m||18,130|
|The governors for the Claremont trust||43,738||1m||15,308|
|Irish International Trading Corp Cork||42,899||986,677||15,014|
|Governors Mercers Hosp||25,000||575,000||8,750|
|St Fintan's Diocesan Trust Mullingar||19,420||446,660||6,797|
|Parish Priest Raphoe||16,463||378,649||5,762|
|Dr Margaret Heffernan*||15,458||170,038||5,410|
|Jewish Home of Ireland||13,516||310,868||4,730|
|Co Cavan Protestant Orphan Society||13,323||306,429||4,663|
|Sir Lingard Goulding Bart||10,635||244,605||3,722|
|Gov and Guardians Rotunda Hospital||10,368||238,464||3,628|
|Dublin Working Home and Harding Technical School||10,000||230,000||3,500|
|Ossory Board of Education||9,271||213,233||3,244|
|St John of God Convent Kilkenny||9,186||211,278||3,215|
|Kilmore Board of Education Cavan||7,262||167,026||2,541|
|St Peters Almshouse Charity South Circular Rd||6,428||147,844||2,249|
|Archbishop of Dublin St Lawrence||6,133||141,059||2,146|
|Brian Geoghegan and Mary Harney*||6,000||44,160||2,100|
|Charlie Chawke the Goat||5,981||137,563||2,093|
|Bishop ofWaterford and Lismore||4,571||105,133||1,599|
|Lady Doris Mitchell Bateman Belfast||4,482||103,086||1,568|
|Dean St Patricks Cathedral||4,320||99,360||1,512|
|Co Leitrim Protestant Orphan Society||3,916||90,068||1,370|
|Council ofAlexandra College Milltown||3,760||86,480||1,316|
|Irish Medical Association||3,234||74,382||1,132|
|Irish Ladies Hockey Fund||3,200||73,600||1,120|
|Wesley Chapel Development Fund Douglas, Cork||2,989||68,747||1,046|
|St Finians Diocesan, Bishops House, Mullingar||2,880||66,240||1,008|
|IrishV eteran and Vintage Car Club||2,700||62,100||945|
|The Clare Heritage and Genealogical centre||2,530||58,190||885|
|Reverend Lord Bishop of Cork, Diocese of Cloyne||2,454||56,442||859|
|Dubco Credit Union Dublin||2,073||47,679||725|
|Rector St Catherine's Parish Church||2,000||46,000||700|
|Unitarian Church, St Stephen's Green||1,895||43,585||663|
|Co Longford Protestant Orphan Society||1,684||38,732||589|
|Sean Donlon, Killaloe*||1,550||24,149||542|
|Oxfam Ireland Belfast||1,536||35,328||537|
|Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children||1,532||35,236||536|
|St Nicholas Church of Ireland Taylors Hill Galway||1,467||33,741||513|
|Castlerea Credit Union||1,459||33,557||510|
|Rector andWarden St Lukes Church, Cork||1,259||28,957||440|
|Governors of the Royal Hospital Donnybrook*||1,206||3,618||422|
|Archbishop Dermot Clifford, Thurles||1,065||24,495||372|
|Clonmel Credit Union||950||21,850||332|
|Archbishop of Dublin||922||21,206||322|
|Rev P Moore Administrator Mullingar Cathedral||904||20,792||316|
|Catholic Archbishop of Dublin||766||17,618||268|
|Church of Ireland Longford||690||15,870||241|
|Catholic Marriage Advisory Centre Cork||676||15,548||236|
|St Lukes Parish Church Sth Circular Rd||520||11,960||182|
|Chairman and friends of Christchurch Cathedral||500||11,500||175|
|Parish Priest and Archbishop of the Parish of Newport||474||10,902||165|
|Convent Perpetual Adoration, Wexford||462||10,626||161|
|Rector and Church Warden Aughadown and Kilcoe Union||400||9,200||140|
|Ossory Diocesan Board of Education, Co Laois||394||9,062||137|
|Legion of Mary Dublin||388||8,924||135|
|Dean and Chapter of Christchurch Cathedral||321||7,383||112|
|Rector Killarney Union, St Marys||124||2,852||43|
|Eugene Sheehy (FormerAIB Chief Executive)||2,760||63,480||966|
|Dermot Gleeson (FormerAIB Chairman)*||400,000||6m||140,000|
|*shares purchased after December 2006|