PTSB results to be overshadowed by loans controversy

The upcoming business week: Aryzta, Applegreen and Lufthansa also due to release results this week

Permanent TSB came under fire for turning down a request to appear before the Oireachtas finance committee over plans to sell €3.7 billion in mortgages. Photograph: Alan Betson

Permanent TSB came under fire for turning down a request to appear before the Oireachtas finance committee over plans to sell €3.7 billion in mortgages. Photograph: Alan Betson

 

Monday

Results: Aryzta, Aralez Pharmaceuticals.

Indicators: Irish construction PMI (Feb); US consumer inflation expectations (Feb).

Meetings: Dublin Chamber Healthy & Sustainable Food, Nutrition, Substitutes Technologies briefing event (Dublin Chamber, Clare Street, Dublin 2).

Tuesday

Results: Applegreen, Cairn Energy, Glenveagh Properties, Geberit, Guess.

Indicators: US business optimism index (Feb), inflation (Feb).

Meetings: InterTradeIreland free workshop on fundraising via private equity (Grant Thornton offices, City Quay, Dublin 2).

Wednesday

Results: Permanent TSB Group, Forterra, Symrise.

Indicators: Irish residential property prices (Jan); Euro zone industrial production (Jan), employment change (Q4); German inflation (Feb); US retails sales (Feb), PPI (Feb).

Meetings: International Energy Research Centre (IERC) conference “Energy Resilience in a Low Carbon Economy” (Fota Island Resort, Cork); Annual Research and Innovation Conference for R&D professionals (Citywest Conference Centre, Dublin); UpStarter Dublin tech recruitment event (Mansion House, Dublin).

PTSB results to be overshadowed by loans controversy

Permanent TSB’s appearance in the headlines this week (with full-year results on Wednesday) is unlikely to supplant the reasons it has featured so prominently in media reporting last month (vulture funds and non-performing loans).

The lender came under fire for turning down a request to appear before the Oireachtas finance committee over plans to sell €3.7 billion in mortgages.

While this political hot potato will have no bearing on financial results for 2017, it will continue to define the story that is Permanent TSB and where it goes from here.

As Owen Callan, analyst at Investec, puts it, what might have been a positive story on the bank’s commercial side will now continue to be less so and focused on the thorny issue of non-performing loans (NPLs).

The bank’s market share of residential mortgage business is likely to rise to about 13 per cent from 10.5 per cent in 2016.

“That will be the first time they have really showed positive progress,” Mr Callan says. “That would suggest they have found that bottom in terms of finding a base. If they can grow their margins and market share then they are doing the two things they are supposed to be doing.”

If anything, however, this week’s results are likely to sharpen focus on what the lender has not done to deal with its NPLs.

Controversy emerged over its plans to sell 18,000 of them – generally those arising from borrowers fallen behind with repayments – to unregulated investment funds, or so-called vulture funds.

Low Carbon Economy event

The kind of extreme weather events experienced recently, whatever the science behind them, have the ability to focus minds on climate change and the steps necessary to fulfil carbon reduction ambitions.

On Wednesday, some of the finest minds in the area will gather to debate the theme “Energy Resilience in a Low Carbon Economy”.

The event will examine how Ireland might accelerate its transition to this burgeoning low-carbon economy and yet maintain a reliable and cost-effective energy supply.

“Delivering a resilient and robust economy requires investment and innovation with a focus on integration, digitisation and empowering citizens in a smart, energy efficient environment,” said professor Tony Day, IERC executive director, ahead of the conference.

The earnestness of the challenge is demonstrated by those attending – Marguerite Sayers, managing director of ESB Networks; Liam O’Sullivan, managing director of Gas Networks Ireland; Energia managing director Tom Gillen and Joy Aloor, head of power technologies at Siemens UK among them.

The one-day meeting will chew over developments in alternative fuels, solar power, business and costs modelling, investment and continuity of supply.

The IERC is a Government-supported energy technology centre based at the Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork. Its work aims to be a catalyst in Ireland for “secure, efficient and cost effective” energy supply across the island.

Thursday

Results: Lufthansa, Adobe.

Indicators: Irish inflation (Feb), GDP (Q4); US export and import prices (Feb).

Meetings: Irish Sponsorship Summit (Croke Park Conference Centre, Dublin).

Friday

Results: Tiffany & Co.

Indicators: Irish balance of trade (Jan); Euro zone inflation (Feb), wage growth (Q4); German wholesale prices (Feb); US manufacturing and industrial production (Feb).

Meetings: Small Firms Association (SFA) Employment Law Discipline and Dismissals Programme (SFA, Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2).

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