Seen & Heard: Central Bank considers five-year run-in for mortgage deposit rules

Announcement on measures expected on Thursday

The Central Bank is considering a five-year run-in for its new 20 per cent mortgage deposit rule, according to the Sunday Independent. The Central Bank Commission is due to decide on the new rules on Tuesday, but the paper reports that the preferred option is now a 15 per cent mortgage deposit, rising by one per cent each year over the next five years.

The Sunday Business Post reported that an announcement on the measures is expected on Thursday with the Central Bank holding firm on the main thrust of the 20 per cent threshold but considering some concessions for first-time buyers. Meanwhile, the Sunday Independent also reported that the national body for credit unions is planning to start a mortgage business.

CRH shopping spree

Irish building materials giant CRH may need to raise up to €1.6 billion from investors in a share placement to fund its proposed €6 billion buyout of assets being sold by Holcim and Lafarge ahead of their €34 billion merger, reported the Sunday Independent.

The Sunday Times stated that CRH has held discussions with KKR, an American private equity giant, about an agreement for the US firm to take control of some divisions of Holcim and Lafarge to assuage regulator concerns.


The Boyne identity

Deutsche Bank has agreed a deal with the National Asset Management Agency to purchase Project Boyne, a €287 million loan portfolio, according to a report in the Sunday Business Post.

Quoting industry sources the paper states that Deutsche will pay in the region of €95 million for the portfolio, which comprises loans secured by Meath developer Willie Smyth.

Xtra-reading Xtra-vision is to start selling books in store as part of its retail strategy for 2015.

The Sunday Independent reported that the chief executive of Xtra-vision and HMV, Gerry Butler, is also considering the introduction of 80 DVD vending machines across the State over the next four weeks in an investment that is worth a "six-figure sum".