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Bank of Ireland reports 80 per cent drop in losses

Preliminary results for 2011 show that losses before tax fell to €190m, compared to €950m in the previous twelve months.

Bank of Ireland chief executive Richie Boucher said 2011 was a
Bank of Ireland chief executive Richie Boucher said 2011 was a "challenging" year.
Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

BANK OF IRELAND has reported significantly lower losses for 2011, with pre-tax losses of €190 million for the twelve months to December.

The bank’s preliminary results for 2011, published this morning, compare the losses to a similar figure of €950 million in the previous year.

BoI’s Irish retail outlets generated profit of €285 million, with its UK operations taking in €106 million, while corporate and treasury operations raised just under €600 million.

The bank lost €574 million in operations at its group centre, however, and took a €31 million hit through consolidating its businesses.

Impairment charges – that is, loans which were simply written off – and advances to customers were up from 2010, however, with €1,939 million of losses this year compared to €1,859 million the previous year.

The absence of any transfers to NAMA, however, meant the bank’s underlying loss before tax was down from just under €3.5 billion in 2010 to just over €1.5 billion in 2011.

Group chief executive Richie Boucher said 2011 had been “another challenging year”, but one in which the bank had made “significant progress”.

“We have remained focused on our key priorities of developing our relationships with our customers whilst strengthening our capital, funding our balance sheet, actively managing our credit and other risks and rigorously managing our costs,” Boucher said.

The accounts showed that the bank’s core Tier 1 capital ratio was up from 9.7 per cent to 15.1 per cent this year – mostly thanks to private investment and state recapitalisation.

The bank is the only native Irish institution to remain outside of majority state ownership, with the government keeping a 15.1 per cent shareholding in the institution.

Read: Banking crisis: Central Bank paid out €30m in consultancy fees in 2011

More: Noonan considering ‘outside expertise’ in quest to cut bankers’ wages

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Gavan Reilly

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