Repossessions, a reminder of the Famine?

Sat, Mar 9, 2013, 00:00

Sir, – John Moran, secretary general of the Department of Finance says of those in mortgage arrears “Ultimately it is the other people in the country who are paying for these people to stay in their houses” (Front page, March 8th).

Mr Moran ignores the fact that his department and the Central Bank have stood back and allowed lenders unfettered discretion to increase their variable mortgage rates, while these same lenders fund themselves from a combination of taxpayers’ money and apparently limitless funding at historically low rates from the ECB. If the variable rates were lower, fewer loans would be in arrears.

Repossession of owner-occupied family homes is resonant of the Famine, with the banks acting as absentee and indifferent landlords. Light-touch regulation of the pricing of retail financial services needs to end. – Yours, etc,

JOSEPH LENIHAN,

Collins Avenue,

Dublin 9.