Tuesday 20 March 2018

The bond-wagon

• With the assessors representing the IMF, ECB and EU in town over the next few days, the time is right for our Government to firmly put on the table the proposition that the redemption of the upcoming unsecured bondholders in the former Anglo Irish Bank should not be paid at par value.

I believe it is incumbent on this Government to advance and win the argument that, in each case where the original bondholder has already off-loaded its misguided bet to the market at a significant discounted value of around 60pc, this should become the maximum redemption value to be paid out to any speculator who is the new owner of the original bondholder's 'bookies slip'.

To do otherwise would be immoral and an act of scandalous betrayal of the Irish taxpayers. The persistent excuse trotted out that the ECB will not allow such a form of 'default' is nonsense, especially as the original bondholders have offloaded their investment and taken the hit.

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