Motor insurer windfalls, Cherrywood homes and a call to prioritise 5G

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Traffic congestion scenes such as this one on the M11 were absent during lockdown, with motor insurance claims falling. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Traffic congestion scenes such as this one on the M11 were absent during lockdown, with motor insurance claims falling. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

 

As road traffic slumped during lockdowns all across Europe, so too did motor insurance claims, with the result that insurers are expected to enjoy windfall profits on the policies, according to Moody’s. Some insurers have issued small rebates, but in a new report, the ratings agency suggests insurers will also use their gains to keep premiums down next year and improve their image with customers. Mark Paul reports.

About a dozen pubs in Dublin have already closed permanently because of Covid-19. In The Bottom Line column, Eoin Burke-Kennedy writes that pandemic-hit publicans may continue to be on the wrong side of tough calls, as the Government is unlikely to risk further reopening at the same time as the return of schools.

The State needs to set up a national working group on 5G to avoid missing out on the economic opportunities the technology can bring. That’s the recommendation of a study published by the Connect research centre, Dublin City Council and Sligo County Council, Charlie Taylor reports.

In our Wednesday commercial property coverage, Ronald Quinlan reports on a legal delay to Colony Capital’s sale of the former City Arts Centre on Dublin’s Moss Street. Meanwhile, Pat Crean’s Marlet Property Group has begun construction of 216 apartments aimed primarily at the upper end of the private rented sector on Lime Street in Dublin’s south docklands.

Quintain Ireland will seek planning permission for 1,000 homes at Cherrywood in south Dublin by the end of the year, but that’s just the start of the homebuilding company’s plans for State’s third-largest private residential landbank. Its executive directors Eddie Byrne and Michael Hynes talk to Joe Brennan about the “unique” site, lessons from the financial crash and their take on the housing market.

Deficits in the final salary pension schemes of Iseq-listed companies fell by €200 million in the second quarter thanks to a rebound in global equity markets, says pensions expert Mercer. Colin Gleeson reports.

Almost half the mortgage borrowers at Permanent TSB who availed of three-month payment breaks at the height of the coronavirus crisis have returned to regular payments, but the bank has still booked a higher-than-expected charge for the first half of 2020 to cover an expected surge in bad loans. Joe Brennan reports.

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