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Building society gets new chief exec

IRISH Nationwide has appointed a stockbroking executive and longtime banker as its new chief executive, the struggling building society said yesterday.

Gerry McGinn, 52, replaces Michael Fingleton, who headed Irish Nationwide for nearly four decades.

The former CEO stepped down in April after coming under fire for his 27.6 million euro (US$38.92 million) pension plan and his acceptance last year of a 1 million euro bonus, which he later repaid.

McGinn, who currently heads Goodbody Stockbrokers in Northern Ireland, worked in the civil service from 2001 until 2007 and was previously chief executive of United Kingdom operations at the Bank of Ireland.

A new cap on executive salaries places McGinn's salary at a maximum 360,000 euros. He will "take up his appointment in the near future," the building society said.

Irish Nationwide suffered a net loss in 2008 of 243 million euros after writing off 464 million euros of bad loans, primarily to the property development sector.

The building society was one of six institutions covered by an emergency government plan formed in October, which insured unlimited deposits and interbank debts totaling 440 billion euros for two years.

Irish Nationwide has said its survival depends on government support. At least 4 billion euros of its development loans are expected to be sold to the National Asset Management Agency, which seeks to isolate untradable assets from the rest of the banking sector.


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