IMF INCREASES RATE CHARGED ON IRISH LOANS - The International Monetary Fund has added a percentage point on to the interest being charged on Ireland’s bailout loan, reports The Irish Independent.

The State is now paying an estimated 4.99% interest on the €22.5bn loan from the Washington-based lender – more than twice the cost Ireland is currently being charged to raise 10-year money on the international markets.

At 4.99% of €22.5bn, the interest bill is €1.12bn.

The yield on Ireland’s 10-year-bond yesterday afternoon was 2.25%, another record low and below both the UK and US. 

The State can borrow seven-year debt for 1.2% per year. The IMF loan has an average maturity of about seven years.

At 1.2%, the interest bill on €22.5bn would be €270m.

While that full saving would likely never be achieved, it shows the scale of the potential savings.

The IMF imposes a surcharge on the loan because of its scale.


PLUG PULLED ON €6BN PROJECT –Mainstream Renewable Power is understood to have fully pulled the plug on its €6bn energy bridge project aimed at exporting 5,000 megawatts of power to Britain and generating nearly €3bn in annual export revenue, according to The Irish Examiner.

While the Government’s ambitious €15bn plan to export wind-generated energy to Britain— from 1,000 new wind turbines across the midland counties — has been put on hold, Mainstream seems to be the only one of the three individual project participants to have fully walked away.

It is understood that Mainstream has opted to return 2.7 gigawatts of connection offers secured with Britain’s National Grid for the project, something which has suggested to the industry that Mainstream will not now be involved in the project should it be resurrected. 

No company representative could be reached to comment on the matter.

While a memorandum of understanding between the Irish and British governments was signed early last year, a formal inter-governmental agreement green-lighting renewable energy trade has not been reached and won’t be in time for the proposed project to get under way by 2017.


YAHOO ACQUIRES ANOTHER MOBILE FIRM – The Irish Times reports that Yahoo is adding to its mobile line-up with the acquisition of analytics company Flurry. 

It is paying more than $300 million for the San Francisco-based start up, which analyses data from smartphone users so developers can better understand their audiences, and helps brands target ads on devices, giving Yahoo more pathways for mobile promotions.
Yahoo chief executive officer Marissa Mayer, who has called mobile a key part of her turnaround effort, has stepped up deal making as she looks to jump start growth at the web portal. 

The Sunnyvale, California-based company last year spent about $1.1 billion on blogging platform Tumblr and has since bought several smaller companies, including mobile-homescreen provider Aviate and video-distribution platform RayV. 

Yahoo has announced or completed at least 12 acquisitions this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.