The AIB Chairman apologised today at the bank’s AGM for the self-inflicted problems caused by excessive lending to the property and construction sectors. At least, AIB avoided major losses in the US toxic securities sector – as revealed in the Congressional hearings on Goldman Sachs, the GS view was that AIB was “too smart to buy this junk”.
See this report on the hearings and this extract featruing the committee chair Senator Carl Levin:
Levin chides Sparks for selling “junk”: In his second jousting session with Sparks, Sen. Levin questioned the former executive about the bank’s Hudson Mezzanine deal, reading an email from a Goldman salesperson in which she said that the client, Allied Irish Bank, was “too smart to buy this junk.”
“I didn’t believe it was junk. We didn’t believe it was a junk. A sales person said that,” Sparks said.
“Yes, if a sales person believed it was junk, you were selling junk,” Levin replied.