Talking points in time

Quotes. Mainly the two Brians. Links from RTE.ie broken because they’ve changed the site link structure.

Quotes. Make of them what you will…

Brian Lenihan; 19 Sept 2008. Six One News.

“Our financial sector is sound and we are determined to ensure that continues”

Brian Lenihan; 30 Sept 2008. Morning Ireland.

“Does this mean the Irish government is exposed? No that’s not correct, of course every Irish bank has to write up their assets and liabilities in balance. The banks would be insolvent otherwise”

Brian Cowen; 30 Sept 2008. Six One News.

We have a banking system which has over the past number of years had good profits, in a healthy state, well capitalisted, well-secured loans. The first people to hurt if anything happens in the bank are the shareholders

Brian Lenihan; 10 Oct 2008. Irish Times.

“the cheapest bailout in the world so far”

Brian Lenihan; 19  Nov 2008. Six One News.

“We’re not rushing into the banks like some governments in other countries without knowing exaclty what the situation is in those banks…”

Brian Lenihan; 14 Dec 2008. Six One News.

“There will be no exposure to the taxpayer on this [€10bn support fund for banks]…”

Brian Lenihan; 16  Jan 2009. Morning Ireland.

Interviewer: Is it possible that you could in a few weeks time that you could move to nationalise AIB and Bank of Ireland as well? “No it’s not… there are no difficulties in these banks, there is no problem”

Brian Lenihan; 8 Feb 2009. The Week in Politics.

“We are now going to commit an investment for a definite return to the taxpayer. This is not bailing out the banks. This is a commercial investment for the state…”

Brian Lenihan; 18 Feb 2009. Dail Eireann.

This decisive step [to nationalise Anglo] was taken to safeguard the interest of the depositors of Anglo Irish Bank and the stability of the economy. I want to assure the House that this decisive step was taken to ensure the new nationalised bank will collect all debts due from persons who owe moneys to the institution.

Brian Lenihan; 8 April 2009. Six One News.

“This is not a bailout… this is about ensuring businesses which cannot access credit, do access credit”

Brian Lenihan; May 18 2009. Irish Times. When challenged as to why he was not nationalising banks (at this time the State had already nationalised Anglo Irish Bank and taken a 25 per cent stake in Bank of Ireland and AIB)…

I do really want to scotch the idea that there are huge risks to the taxpayer in the valuation process because we are not nationalising these institutions.

Brian Lenihan; 10 Sept 2009. Six One News.

[NAMA] will get credit flowing.

Brian Lenihan; 16 Sept 2009. Nama Bill, Dáil.

NAMA will ensure that credit flows again to viable businesses and households by cleansing the balance sheets of Irish banks. This is essential for economic recovery and the generation of employment. It will ensure that we avoid the Japanese outcome of zombie banks that are just ticking over and not making a vibrant contribution to economic growth.

Brian Lenihan; 9 Dec 2009. Six One News

“The worst is over, we’ve turned a corner”

Brian Lenihan; 4 April 2010. On the residential property market. Irish Independent.

“One of the good things about the steep discount, averaging 47 per cent, is that the residential property market will now be stabilised at a realistic level. You can now buy in confidence that the price is realistic.”

Brian Lenihan; News At One. 13 April 2010. Speaking about ERSI report…

“It means that we are stabilising as an economy and it also means we are turning the corner, and there will be increased numbers of jobs created,” he said. “At least we’re on an upward trajectory”

Brian Lenihan; Breakfast with Newstalk. 26 April 2010.

BL: No, no, listen, listen. This not good for the country and it’s inaccurate. If next year we’re obliged to include the €8bn, the €8bn will not actually be borrowed next year the device of the promissory note means we borrow…

Ivan Yates: No, I know the promissory note is over ten years. You’re missing the point…

BL: No you’re missing the point! This is an accounting device! This is not real borrowing! What the markets look at is real borrowing. Not accountancy devices…

Brian Lenihan; Breakfast with Newstalk. 26 April 2010.

Now that I’m the shareholder in Irish Nationwide I will clearly ensure that whatever money is owed by Mr Fingleton is paid by Mr Fingleton.

Brian Lenihan; Irish Times. “Ireland not at risk of fallout from fiscal crisis, says Lenihan”. 6 May 2010.

“The risk of contagion in my view does not extend to Ireland. Over the last 18 months we have taken many of the measures that the Greeks are only beginning to take. I don’t see Ireland as being at great risk.”

A proposed €110 billion aid package for debt-stricken Greece has failed to soothe concerns that the fiscal problems saddling it, and perceived weaker euro-zone nations, will hurt the banking system and worldwide economic growth. “One of the reasons markets are critical of countries other than Greece is because some . . . don’t just have public debt problems, they also have structural problems with their economies,” Mr Lenihan said. “We’re not a country that has the severe structural problems that some of the other Mediterranean countries have shown and the markets have tended to differentiate Ireland out from these countries.”

Brian Cowen; 14 May 2010. Irish Times.

“We have learned hard lessons and have taken difficult decisions. Our economy is now emerging from recession and Ireland is strongly fighting back.”

Brian Lenihan; 7 July 2010. Irish Times.

“It is important to bear in mind that these projections are for a plan over 10 years; the figures are likely to change over time.

“But the Government has made clear that should Nama eventually make a loss, the Government will recover this through a surcharge on the banks.”

Mr Lenihan said the bottom line was that Nama would never cost the taxpayer anything and might even make a profit of €3.9 billion.

Brian Cowen; 7 July 2010. Irish Times.

Speaking in the Dáil this afternoon, Taoiseach Brian Cowen said [Nama] would make a profit “somewhere in the order of €1 billion”.

Brian Lenihan; 14 Sept 2010. Dail Eireann.

Certainly if given the chance I will have this problem sorted out, and this Government will have this problem sorted out a lot earlier than 10 years.

Brian Lenihan; 24 Sept 2010. Irish Times.

In recent weeks the extra yield investors demand to hold Irish bonds over German bunds has surged to record highs due to investor concern about the State’s ability to manage the cost of its bank bailout and reduce the budget deficit.

Mr Lenihan said he was undeterred by the data and that the underlying trends indicated a remarkable turnaround for the economy.

“Tax revenues are stabilising, public expenditures are under control and our budget deficit will shrink next year,” he said. “The recovery is still at a tentative stage and is likely to be uneven.”

Goldman Sachs; 24 Sept 2010. Irish Times.

One bright spot for the Government today came from a research note by Goldman Sachs Group which said Ireland was “very unlikely” to experience a financial crisis as severe as the one that forced Greece to seek an international bailout earlier this year.

“A repeat of the Greek debt turmoil in Ireland is very unlikely,” Michael Vaknin, a senior fixed-income strategist at Goldman in London, said.

“With Irish spreads already at all-time highs, we would argue that refinancing risks in the Irish debt market is aggressively priced-in already.”

Brian Lenihan; 30 Sept 2010. Newstalk.

The Finance Minister has described today as ‘rock bottom day’ as far as the banks are concerned.

Brian Lenihan says the announcement today on the final Anglo Irish bill is an ‘urgent and immediate priority to reinforce international market confidence in our ability and commitment to restore our banking system to health’

Brian Lenihan; 10 Oct 2010. Irish Times. ‘State becomes majority shareholder in AIB’

Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan said the State would have to invest in the bank, and that “progressive” changes would be made at management and board level in AIB. “It will, I believe, result in a substantial gain to the taxpayer over time as the bank is restored to its proper position,” he said.

Brian Lenihan; 4 Oct 2010. Irish Times.

… the figures showed the exchequer deficit for the first nine months of the year stood at €13.4 billion, compared to a deficit of €20.1 billion, recorded at the end of September last year.

Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan said this evening the figures showed the public finances were “stabilising” due to decisions taken by the Government.

Brian Lenihan; 11 Oct 2010. Irish Times.

Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan said today he is “absolutely” sure the country will not need to seek a bailout from the IMF and European Union.

In an interview recorded for Bloomberg Television, Mr Lenihan said Ireland “was not in a balance of payments deficit position” but admitted the country did have “real fiscal and banking problems to address”.

“We had a big contraction last year. We contracted by 10 per cent in GNP terms in one year. We got it back to zero again this year. That’s quite a turnaround,” he said.

Mr Lenihan claimed Ireland was emerging from deficit on the back of stronger exports and stressed the country is fully funded through to the middle of 2011.

Patrick Honohan; 13 Oct 2010. Irish Times.

Prof Honohan said dealing with senior bondholders was “complicated” because under Irish law they “stand equally with depositors”.

He also said things went “in a bad direction” for Ireland, and “we’re now turning this around and coming out of it”.

Brian Cowen; 16 Nov 2010. Irish Times.

Speaking in the Dáil, Mr Cowen reiterated that Ireland had made no application for external support and said there had been some “ill-informed and inaccurate” speculation about the Government seeking a bailout in recent days.

Brian Cowen; 17 Nov 2010. Irish Times.

Taoiseach Brian Cowen insisted “there has been no dictation from anybody. What we’re involved in here is working with colleagues in respect of currency problems and euro issue problems that are affecting Ireland, they’re affecting other countries. They’re particularly affecting Ireland at the moment.”

He stressed that “there has been no question, as has been stated all over the weekend, of a negotiation for a bailout”.

Brian Cowen; 19 Nov 2010. Irish Times.

Taoiseach Brian Cowen denied that the rescue plan would lead to a loss of Irish sovereignty. He also dismissed suggestions of failure. “I don’t believe there’s any reason for Irish people to be ashamed and humiliated,” he said.

13 thoughts on “Talking points in time”

  1. Great item very well put together.
    The most interesting comment here is the Goldman Sachs one remember they were also heavily involved in Greece. There needs to be some independent investigation into their role and the role of Peter Sutherland who seemed to be dictating the Irish government policy in the crisis.

  2. Thanks for puting that up. Someone needs to do a youtube version of this for the election and play it around Dublin! I would but lack the Skills 🙁

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