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Pillar Banks are abusing their Dominant Positions as they turn Older People and SMEs from the Doors – Tóibín

4 November, 2015

Commenting on the new Bank of Ireland rules which will see Bank of Ireland refuse to allow customers withdrawals of less than €700 or lodge less than €3,000 at the counter in some of its branches, Peadar Tóibín TD Sinn Féin Junior Finance Spokesperson stated that ‘when the Fine Gael and Labour Government created a banking market concentrated on two pillar banks they effectively created a Banking oligopoly.

The Meath West TD said:

“It there should be of no surprise therefore that these banks would display oligopolistic behaviour. This can be seen with the banks stating that business will happen in Ireland on their terms. With regards banking services, it’s a sellers’ market. Proof can be seen in the high mortgage interest rate, high business interest rates, closure of bank branches in small to medium sized towns and now the prohibition of the withdrawal of less than €700 or the lodgement of less than €3,000 at the counter in some of its branches.

“Viable small and micro businesses continue to suffocate because of legacy debt, and the new ecosystem of lending products from this government has failed to get the targeting flows of lending into businesses. New banking trends have left no space for older people many who are not internet experts.

“We in Sinn Féin have created detailed policies, which if implemented would see a sustainable and competitive banking market. It would see the introduction of a Public Banking network modelled on the successful Sparkassen local banking network in Germany. This would add a new dimension and increase competitive behaviour amongst banks. It would rebalance the market towards customers. We have also introduced legislation that would allow for fairer interest rates. It important now that the Minister for Finance uses his influence and guarantee a fair banking system.” 

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