The numbers earning over €100,000 at the Central Bank last year increased by 36 to 302.
That is according to the 2021 annual report of the Central Bank which reveals that a record amount in monetary fines imposed on financial firms and individuals by the Central Bank in 2021 contributed to profits at the bank last year increasing by 59 per cent to €1.32 billion.
The report further reveals that a dividend of €1.067 billion is payable to the Exchequer arising from the sharp rise in profits.
In the report, which has been laid before the Oireachtas, it partly credits the increase in profit with an increase in “other net income” from €201 million to €264 million due to increases in financial regulation monetary penalties and financial regulation industry funding levy income.
The Central Bank’s monetary penalty income increased almost three-fold from €24.68 million to €67 million - the report states that the €67 million “is the highest amount imposed in a single year to date”.
Income from the financial regulation industry funding levy rose from €170 million to €185 million.
Another major contributor to the profits was the Central Bank’s net realised gains from financial operations doubling from €652.2 million in 2020 to €1.27 billion in 2021.
The Central Bank’s overall net income increased by 43.45 per cent from €1.16 billion to €1.67 billion while its expenses increased only marginally from €339.8 million to €356.1 million.
The report shows that pay to Central Bank governor, Gabriel Makhlouf rose from €288,220 to €293,257. The report states that Mr Makhlouf also receives a UK public service pension.
The salary for the deputy governor of prudential regulation Ed Sibley for 2021 was €255,006 compared to €250,630 for 2020. Earlier this year, the Central Bank announced the departure of Mr Sibley when his term ends in August.
The salary for the Central Bank’s other deputy governor, Sharon Donnery, was at the same level at €255,006 for 2021.
The senior officials were three of 12 Central Bank employees to be paid more than €190,000 last year.
Another 40 staff received pay between €150,000 and €190,000 with another 250 earning between €100,000 and €150,000 last year.
In total, 302 members of staff earned over €100,000 at the Central Bank last year.
Decline in numbers working for the Central Bank
This compares to 266 in that earning bracket in 2020. The report discloses that pay to key management personnel in 2021 was €11.49 million compared to €10.85 million in 2020.
Numbers employed by the Central Bank last year declined 2,115 to 2,110 with staff costs increasing from €233 million to €258 million.
The report shows that the Central Bank had 977 employed in financial regulation in 2021.
The amount paid out by the Central Bank in 2021 under ‘consultancy’ increased by just under €1 million to €7.4 million with legal advice accounting for €1.33 million. The largest component of consultants’ pay was IT coming in at €2.32 million.
Legal fees concerning 17 separate cases initiated or taken against the Central Bank in 2021 totalled €1.7 million.
The pay under staff hospitality last year more than doubled from €46,000 in 2020 to €97,000 last year.
At the end of 2021, the amount of Central Bank gold reserves stood at €492.8 million - a 65 per cent increase on the €299 million in gold at the end of 2020.
A note attached to the accounts states that “the increase in the balance at year-end 2021 is due to purchases of gold as part of the Central Bank’s long term investment strategy and the change in the market value of gold holdings from the year-end 2020 to 2021”.