AIB's chief executive has encouraged the Government to look at selling down more of its 71% stake in the bank.

This follows a 25% jump in the stock in the six months since its initial public offering in June, when the Government sold an almost 29% stake in the bailed out bank for €3.4 billion, the largest IPO in Europe this year. 

"Since then, the stock has performed well and markets have performed well so my commentary would generally be these things come and go so if you have a market place that's there, if you have a willing investor set that understand the story now, then it's often opportune to take that when it's there," AIB's CEO Bernard Byrne said.

He made his comments as he addressed the Finance Committee today.

"As of close last night, the total value of cash received plus the 71% of the market value actually equates to the €20.8 billion the state invested in AIB," Mr Byrne said. 

"I can't tell you what will happen next in terms of valuations, so I would encourage people to look at sell down at this point in time," he added.