Irish savers doubled deposits in overseas banks in 2010

Revenue figures show €235m placed in banks abroad, up from €117m in 2009

According to the Central Bank, deposits from the private sector, including households, businesses and financial institutions, in Irish resident banks fell by 7.6 per cent or € 15 billion in 2010. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

According to the Central Bank, deposits from the private sector, including households, businesses and financial institutions, in Irish resident banks fell by 7.6 per cent or € 15 billion in 2010. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Wed, Mar 20, 2013, 06:00


The amount of money deposited by Irish savers in overseas banks doubled in 2010 as the euro zone sovereign debt crisis took hold, new statistics from the Revenue Commissioners show.

In 2010, some € 235 million was placed on deposit in overseas banks by some 901 individuals or couples, up from €117 million in 2009, as savers and investors looked to diversify their holdings away from Irish banks and the euro currency. In 2008, just €89 million was held in foreign bank accounts, according to information compiled by the Revenue from income tax filings.

Tax payers filing on a self-assessed basis must disclose information on foreign bank accounts, as interest earned is subject to income tax, rather than deposit interest retention tax, as is the case with domestic deposits. The aforementioned figures do not include PAYE taxpayers, who may have declared their foreign bank holdings through their local tax office.

Since 2005, the amount of disclosed foreign bank deposits has jumped 261 per cent from € 65 million to € 235 million. However, the number of individuals or couples investing their money abroad has stayed largely stable, at 769 in 2005, and 901 in 2010.

Deposits held overseas grew as those kept in Irish resident banks decreased. According to the Central Bank, deposits from the private sector, including households, businesses and financial institutions, in Irish resident banks fell by 7.6 per cent or € 15 billion in 2010, followed by a further 7.3 per cent decline in 2011. The trend was reversed in 2012 when deposits grew by 2.5 per cent.