Borrowers with higher debt burdens than the current Central Bank of Ireland’s rules allow are more likely to have sought payment breaks during the current crisis, the Irish Central Bank’s deputy governor Sharon Donnery has said, according to a Irish Times report. This was proof that the regulator’s mortgage lending rules had helped the financial sector “absorb rather than amplify the shock of the pandemic”, she said. The Central Bank’s rules curtail consumers to borrowing within strict loan-to-value (LTV) and loan-to-income (LTI) limits.
Businesses say they’re barely coping with the current pared-down regime of Brexit checks on goods shipments to Northern Ireland and want to delay fuller checks due to kick in on April 1, Politico reported. Executives from ports, haulage, logistics and customs clearance firms issued their plea on the eve of Thursday’s meeting between European Commission Vice President Maroš Šefčovič and U.K. Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove in London.
Consumer spending declined last month as households cut back after Christmas and as the Covid lockdown reduced shopping opportunities, the Irish Times reported. Total spending fell 14 per cent year on year, with increased sales of digital content and spending on home-related goods failing to offset big declines in hospitality, travel and clothing. Figures compiled by fintech Revolut show spending in bars was down 94 per cent compared with January 2020, while expenditure in hotels and restaurants fell 86 per cent and 70 per cent respectively.
Aer Lingus has secured €150 million from the State-backed Ireland Strategic Investment Fund’s (Isif) pandemic recovery scheme, the Irish Times reported. The three-year loan will be used to strengthen the airline’s liquidity position as it seeks to deal with the impact of the Covid crisis. Isif, which operates under the umbrella of the National Treasury Management Agency, said the loan was agreed on commercial terms. Rival airline Ryanair has been critical of State supports availed of by competitors across Europe.
The Irish High Court said on Friday it had granted an extension to Norwegian Air’s creditor protection, as requested by the examiner overseeing the process, Reuters reported. The extension to Feb. 25 was granted after a lawyer representing the Irish examiner told the court that the examiner believed the budget carrier had a reasonable prospect of survival. Norway’s government backed the airline’s survival plan on Thursday, saying it would stump up cash if private investors did too. “I will grant that application and extend the time for reporting...