Bank of Ireland profits fell in 2016

It plans to make 2017 dividend payments in 2018

Bank of Ireland profits fell in 2016

Photocall file photo

Bank of Ireland has reported an underlying profit of €1.07bn for 2016 - that's down from €1.2bn in 2015.

All of the Irish financial institution's trading divisions were profitable and the bank will pay a 2017 dividend in 2018. It had previously signalled that it hoped to make a dividend payment during this year.

Richie Boucher, Bank of Ireland Group chief executive spoke to Newstalk Breakfast, he said that bond market volatility and Brexit disruption had led to BOI delaying its dividend payment.

The bank added that the fall-off in profits was because 2015's figures were bolstered by bond sales.

He told Newstalk that he expects this volatility to ease in 2017 - and said that when dividends begin they will be "predictable" and "sustainable."

Mr Boucher rejected the suggestion that this is a disappointing filing and said that the bank expects stable economic growth in both the UK and Ireland this year. He added that growth in Ireland has spread beyond the capital to "all economic regions."

BOI continued to be the largest lender to the Irish economy last year, its core loan book grew by €1.7bn.

It also announced it reduced non-performing loans by a further €4.1bn in 2016 while defaulted loans reduced by €3.7bn in 2016.