Opening Bell: Bank of Ireland's pension hit, Microsoft's Irish emails, China's growth figures

Get up to speed with today's breaking Irish and international business news

In the wake of the UK's decision to leave the EU, Bank of Ireland's pension deficit has grown to €1.2bn from €750m in December of last year.

This news, which was released in a statement yesterday, makes it less likely that chief executive Richie Boucher will restore dividends by the end of this year.

The Financial Services Union, which represents the majority of Bank of Ireland workers, said that it "does not expect any contact from the bank as this announcement is a result of the impact of Brexit and under no circumstances would the union expect an employer to attempt to address pensions, which are long-term benefits and deferred wages, on the back of short-term changes," The Irish Times reports.

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Microsoft has thanked the Irish Government for its support following a landmark US court ruling over emails stored on Irish servers.

Reuters reports that the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the US government cannot force Microsoft or other tech companies to hand over emails stored on servers in other countries.

Today's decision overturned a previous one, in which Microsoft had been ordered to give the US justice department access to a customer's email account.

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China has reported stronger-than-expected growth in the second quarter of 2016 - with the economy expanding by 6.7%.

This is still the slowest pace since the 2008 financial crisis.

However, investment growth slowed, property investment cooled, this has a knock-on effect on other industries like cement and steel.

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Charities will soon be required to report their annual finances to the Charity Regulator.

Tánaiste and Minister for Justice, Frances Fitzgerald, will launch the regulator's strategy for the next two years, this morning.

The regulator wants to improve transparency - by maintaining an up-to-date charity register and carrying out worker satisfaction surveys.

The statement has been prepared for a number of months and won't deal specifically with the Console revelations.

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