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Recalling the Celtic Tiger

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Edited By Eamon Maher, Eugene O'Brien and Brian Lucey

This book looks at various effects, symptoms and consequences of the period in Irish culture known as the Celtic Tiger. It will trace the critical pathway from boom to bust – and up to the current beginnings of a similar, smaller boom – through events, personalities and products. The short entries offer a sense of the lived experience of this seismic period in contemporary Irish society.

While clearly not all aspects of the period could realistically be covered, the book does contain essential information about the central actors, events, themes, and economic trends, which are discussed in a readable and accessible manner. Each entry is linked to the overall Celtic Tiger phenomenon and its immediate aftermath.

The book also provides a comprehensive account of what happened in this period and will be a factual resource for anyone anxious to discover information on the areas most commonly connected to it. All entries are written by experts in the area. The contributors include broadcasters, economists, cultural theorists, sociologists, literary critics, journalists, politicians and writers, each of whom brings particular insights to some aspect of the Celtic Tiger.

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Anglo Irish Tapes (Constantin Gurdgiev)

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Constantin Gurdgiev

Anglo Irish Tapes

In June 2013, the Irish Independent uncovered the audio recordings of internal phone discussions between two senior executives at the Anglo Irish Bank, dating back to September 2008. This was the peak of the Global Financial Crisis, which led to the Irish State bailing out the failed bank in a sweeping guarantee that stung Irish taxpayers for tens of billions of euro, and led to the collapse of Anglo Irish, nationalisation of Allied Irish and several smaller banking institutions, and a partial nationalisation of the Bank of Ireland.

The Anglo tapes involve conversations between Mr John Bowe (Anglo’s head of capital markets), and Mr Peter Fitzgerald (bank’s director of retail banking). Described in the media as ‘jaw-dropping’, ‘scandalous’, and ‘shocking’, the tapes reveal the strategy pursued by the Anglo executives in manipulating the Irish government to extend the bank bailout money; the lamentable disarray at the Irish Financial Services Regulator; and the psychology of the bank executives caught in the maelstrom of the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. The tapes also exposed the culture of vulgarity, over-confidence, and lack of professional fitness at the top of Irish banking management elites that epitomised the later stages of the Celtic Tiger.

In one conversation, John Bowe recalled how the Irish Financial Regulator responded to the bank demand for €7 billion in funding from the State to shore up its failing wholesale funding model, quoting the alleged response by the Regulator...

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