Intensive discussions are taking place this weekend which may lead to a significant investor buying a stake in Bank of Ireland.

The bank is raising capital following a stress test by the Central Bank.

The bank needs to raise €1.9bn in the final part of its capital raising, which includes a rights issue in which the bank will sell new shares to investors.

A Department of Finance spokesperson today said: 'The State is in discussions with potential equity investors in Bank of Ireland in relation to a possible material investment in the bank.'