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Irelands regulator plans to stress-test CU loans
DUBLIN (6/10/10)--Ireland's credit union regulator may start stress-testing loans for about 20 credit unions that it says are having solvency problems. However, the Irish League of Credit unions (ILCU) has produced figures contradicting that claim. ILCU says that only five credit unions have solvency issues out of the country's 414 credit unions (The Independent June 9). In late May, Jonathan McMahon, assistant director general for financial institutions supervision at the Central Bank, told the Oireachtas Committee on Economic Regulatory Affairs that the regulator was in the early stage of assessing problems at about 20 credit unions (Irish Times May 28). The 20 are on a watch list for high levels of arrears and potential solvency issues, said The Independent. James O'Brien, the registrar of credit unions, told the committee some credit unions may not be able to stand alone but he did not have legal authority to merge struggling credit unions into stronger ones. He said the only option available if a solvency problem arose would be to liquidate, according to the Times.. ILCU said that its Savings Protection Scheme--the league's deposit insurance fund for credit unions--is assisting five credit unions.


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