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Building society reports big losses

Irish Nationwide Building Society has reported a loss of almost €2.5bn over the last year, linked to commercial property lending.

The results, announced this week, show that customer deposits with the society dropped by €1.5bn in 2009, mainly because people withdrew their cash from the company's Manx subsidiary.

The Irish Government has promised to inject billions into the society to help it meet requirements from the country's financial regulator.

A statement from Irish Nationwide IOM said: 'The results of The Irish Nationwide Building Society are, as the Chief Executive Gerry McGinn said, disappointing. The substantial losses reflect the unprecedented levels of impairment on the Society's loan book.

'However, the operating income has improved on last year. Customers and the markets are aware that the Irish Government has provided significant capital injections into Irish institutions including INBS. Our capital injection, and the continuing support of the Irish Government as a stake holder, enables the group to look forward positively and this it intends to do.'

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