Vulture Funds, are a Fucking Ruthless, shower of Wild West, Bastards? They need, To be Tackled, and Reined in, Urgently?

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Lack of regulation on vulture funds ‘like Wild West’, says Fine Gael TD

 7th January 2023

The Finance Committee must have a special meeting to discuss the “Wild West” lack of regulation of vulture funds, according to its vice chair.

Some funds are selling people’s homes and properties online after seizure, “in a kind of eBay operation,” says Bernard Durkan, Fine Gael deputy for Kildare North.

“They are foreclosing too fast on people, and then maximising their profits – when they acquired these loans at a very reduced price in the first place, in part thanks to the taxpayer,” Mr Durkan said.

He criticised the lack of Central Bank supervision and said vulture funds had previously refused invitations to appear in front of the Finance Committee.

But now he wants a special meeting where market watchdogs can be quizzed about their behaviour, with a view to the introduction of any required reforming legislation.

“Since investment funds are not currently subject to Central Bank rules, it is important that the so-called vulture funds might be examined by the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform,” he says.

“This is especially the case where there appears to be an urgency on their part to dispose of loan book properties acquired from the main banks in recent times.”

While such funds had previously declined to appear before the committee, “that should not prevent their examination by the committee in their absence,” he said, adding that they would once again be invited to attend.

“In particular, the sale of properties by way of the internet is a growing tendency which suggests an unnecessary element of haste given that many such properties and holdings were acquired at a greatly reduced price when compared to their face value,” he said.

“The customer is still important. There is a continuous and ongoing need to ensure that customers’ needs continue to be met by the banks and financial institutions in terms of convenience, availability and geographical location.”

He also complained about banking robots. Mr Durkan said people wanted to talk to a human “and not a machine” when they have a financial issue or account query.

He highlighted the installation of talking machines in banks that interact with nonplussed customers

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