Irish banks move on real estate loans

TEXT OF STORY

Bill Radke: In Ireland, today has been dubbed "bailout Tuesday." Our Europe correspondent Stephen Beard reports the government in Dublin will announce what it calls a once-and-for-all attempt to sort out the Irish banks.


Stephen Beard: Today, the Irish government will begin taking over about $100 billion worth of bad real estate loans to take the pressure off its beleaguered banks. This is the latest phase in the long struggle with the financial crisis.

Owen O'Callaghan is with BNP Paribas. He says so far, the Irish government has done a stellar job -- especially in tackling its budget deficit:

Owen O'Callaghan: It's more advanced in cutting unnecessary spending, or at least spending that is no longer matched by revenues than any other European country. So its progress it's made there has been very impressive.

But today's grand bank bailout could backfire. If the borrowers default on the loans, the Irish government could wind up owning hundreds of pubs, empty office blocks and shopping malls.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

About the author

Stephen Beard is the European bureau chief and provides daily coverage of Europe’s business and economic developments for the entire Marketplace portfolio.

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