Drumm said give ‘the fingers’ to those concerned about flow of deposits to Anglo

Executives at failed bank said nationalisation would be ‘fantastic’ as jobs would be secured

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive  David Drumm: can be heard laughing as his colleague sings Deutschland Uber Alles. Photograph: Josh Reynolds/The Irish Times

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm: can be heard laughing as his colleague sings Deutschland Uber Alles. Photograph: Josh Reynolds/The Irish Times

Tue, Jun 25, 2013, 17:29

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm made light of the institution “abusing” the bank guarantee and warned an executive at the bank not to be too blatant about how he did so.

In telephone recordings from October 2008, published today by the Irish Independent, Mr Drumm can be heard laughing as his colleague sings Deutschland Uber Alles in reference to German concerns about the flow of deposits into Anglo following the bank guarantee.

In one conversation, John Bowe, the bank’s then head of capital markets, tells Mr Drumm he is making “nice progress”.

“Ah, you’re abusing that guarantee. Paying too much in Germany I heard now as well. F**king ridiculous, John,” Mr Drumm replies, before Mr Bowe mockingly sings Deutschland Uber Alles.

Regarding concerns that the flow of deposits from other EU countries to Ireland could create an international row, Mr Drumm says: “So f**king what. Just take it anyway… Stick the fingers up.”

“We won’t do anything blatant but we have to get the money in…Jack the rates up. That’s what I really meant, get the f**king money in, get it in.”

Mr Drumm is heard mimicking a warning he received to be careful that the bank was not being set up for a fall by the stream of money coming into it. “Setting us up by giving us money? I don’t mind being set up that way,” he says.

In a separate tape, Mr Bowe and Anglo’s former director of retail banking, Peter FitzGerald, are heard talking about the potential nationalisation of the bank given the troubles it was facing in 2008.

During the conversation, Mr Bowe says he does not think the bank is an “easy sell to anybody”.

“So, do I think it’s going to be possible to offload it? No, I don’t. What will it end up being? It could be breaking up and selling individual [LOAN]books and it could be nationalisation, you know,” Mr Bowe says, adding that staff at the bank could in effect become “civil servants”.

“That would be fantastic. If it was nationalisation, we’d all keep our jobs.”

Mr FitzGerald replies: “It would be fantastic, wouldn’t it?”

In another conversation, Mr Bowe advises Mr FitzGerald to pass on some words of encouragement to Anglo staff in London. “The message is look, keep your heads up everything is okay, it’s a shitty world out there, every bank is going through the horrors at the moment,” he says.

Mr FitzGerald then says Mr Drumm had told him: “Don’t worry we’re going to be around for a long time.”

Mr Bowe replied “and then the phone went dead” before the two break into laughter.