Masding pulls on green jersey to rant at Government and media

PTSB chief ’s claim bank is ‘undervalued’ by Government follows slump in shares

PTSB chief executive Jeremy Masding: accused Irish journalists of “zero balance” in reporting progress made by the institution. Photograph: Colm Mahady/Fennells

PTSB chief executive Jeremy Masding: accused Irish journalists of “zero balance” in reporting progress made by the institution. Photograph: Colm Mahady/Fennells

 

Running troubled Permanent TSB is clearly a taxing and, no doubt, at times frustrating, job.

Could the pressure finally be getting to chief executive Jeremy Masding? Judging from some bizarre comments made by the long-suffering banking executive this week, it appears it might be.

Masding, who has been in charge of PTSB since February 2012, went on something of a rant in an interview that appeared a day after shares in the lender plunged by more than 14 per cent in Dublin.

In addition to accusing Irish journalists of displaying “zero balance” in reporting the progress made by the institution over the last few years, Masding claimed the media and the Government were guilty of fawning over foreign banks.

Such undignified behaviour is enough to make any man feel unloved, as the former Barclays banker made clear.

“When I look at the way the Government treats foreign banks here – when I’m one of the biggest employers – it makes you feel undervalued,” Masding said, sounding not unlike Kevin Keegan during his infamous “I will love” it rant.

It’s a topsy turvy world when you have a Welsh-born British executive playing the green-jersey card for Ireland’s still recovering banking sector.

PTSB currently has the highest ratio of non-performing loans (NPLs) among Irish banks. Judging by investors’ reaction to the lender’s proposals for dealing with them, it would seem that they are also feeling upset.

While the bank has undoubtedly made progress in recent years, there is significant work to be done before Masding can demand to be treated like the hero he thinks he is.

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