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30 July 2009 Edition

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Finance Minister must halt bank interest hikes

FINANCE Minister Brian Lenihan has refused to intervene in Permanent TSB’s decision to hike up interest rates on mortgage holders, thus negating the recent European Central Bank reductions. The minister’s comment that the increase reflects commercial market realities is breathtakingly arrogant and illustrates magnificently in whose interests his decisions are made.
Lenihan has mooted a possible reduction in the minimum wage and his government is actively considering reducing social welfare payments, as recommended by the McCarthy Report. At every turn this government is attacking the low-paid and the vulnerable and doing whatever it takes to protect the profits on the banks.
It is interesting to note that one of the minister’s appointees to the Permanent TSB board is Ray McSharry, the former Minister for Finance who appointed Colm McCarthy to the original ‘An Bord Snip’ in 1987.
The European Central Bank’s interest rate reductions that have been so instrumental in bringing down costs of living will be negated if the Government gives this signal to the banking sector that it is OK to hike up rates. Taking money out of the general economy and putting it into the coffers of financial institutions profits is economically inept and socially reckless.

An Phoblacht Magazine

AN PHOBLACHT MAGAZINE:

  • The first edition of this new magazine will feature a 10 page special on the life and legacy of our leader Martin McGuinness to mark the first anniversary of his untimely passing.
  • It will include a personal reminiscence by Gerry Adams and contributions from the McGuinness family.
  • There will also be an exclusive interview with our new Uachtarán Mary Lou McDonald.

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