Sinn Féin TD Imelda Munster today challenged the Governor of the Central Bank on why they had not pressed retail banks to pass on the benefits of European Central Bank deposit interest rates to consumers.
Deputy Munster engaged with Central Bank officials at the Public Accounts Committee to examine their 2022 Financial Statements.
Teachta Munster said:
“Irish banks are currently providing customers some of the lowest interest rates across the eurozone at under 0.1%, effectively meaning that depositors are losing money on their savings.
“At the same time, their own deposits in the European Central Bank (ECB) are yielding them a small fortune.
“The Irish Central Bank is responsible for regulating the sector and I would have expected this to be a matter of significant concern – based on my interaction with the Governor today it is apparent that it is not.
“When pressed today, the Governor seemed to indicate that he had not even raised the issue with the few remaining retail banks operating in the state – for the Central Bank it appears the ripping off of Irish consumers is simply ‘business-as-usual’.
“Irish savers deserve better from their banks, but they also deserve better from the Central Bank and its Governor.
“The Public Accounts Committee is tasked with ensuring value-for-money and accountability regarding Irish taxpayer money.
“It is welcome that, following the suspension of a meeting last month due to Central Bank officials being unable to answer basic questions, the Governor himself was finally able to appear today – if Irish savers continue to be so blatantly ripped off, I expect the Committee will begin such invitations on a much more regular basis.”