Ulster Bank is most fined financial institution in Ireland

Central Bank’s fine of €3.3m imposed for breaches of anti-money-laundering protocols

Ulster Bank has been fined €10.8 million by the Central Bank since 2006, more than Quinn Insurance and Irish Nationwide. Photograph: Alan Betson

Ulster Bank has been fined €10.8 million by the Central Bank since 2006, more than Quinn Insurance and Irish Nationwide. Photograph: Alan Betson

 

Ulster Bank’s latest €3.3 million fine from the Central Bank means the bank has now been fined more than any other financial institution operating in Ireland since 2006, and more than either of the scandal-hit Quinn Insurance and Irish Nationwide.

On Tuesday, the Central Bank imposed a fine of €3.3 million on the bank for for breaches of anti-money-laundering and terrorist financing regulations. Regulators said the bank had admitted the breaches, which occurred over a six-year period, and said the incidents highlighted “significant failings” in the company’s procedures.This brings total fines for the Irish-based subsidiary of Royal Bank of Scotland to €10.8 million since 2006, in excess of the €8.8 million in total imposed on Quinn Insurance which went into administration in 2010, and more than the €5.05 million levied on Irish Nationwide, which collapsed at a cost of €5.4 billion to the Irish taxpayer.

Governance failings

Other hefty fines have been imposed on Combined Insurance Company of Europe (€3.4 million); Alico Life (€3.2 million) and Merrill Lynch International Bank (€2.8 million). AIB has also been subject to three fines over the years, amounting to €2.5 million.

According to the Central Bank, fines collected as part of its penalties programmes become part of its ordinary income. Where there is a surplus, 80 per cent of this is then remitted to the exchequer on an annual basis. In 2015, some €2.2 million was collected in fines, and some €1.8 billion in total was paid to the exchequer.