One banker in Republic was paid more than €6m last year

European Banking Authority finds 48 bankers in State received more than €1m in 2021

One banker working in the Republic was paid more than €6 million in 2021, according to the latest data from the European Banking Authority, which collates numbers on high earners in the sector.

The EBA’s latest report finds 48 bankers working for institutions in the State were paid more than €1 million in 2021, with half of these working in investment banking. Collectively, the group of 48 were paid some €86 million, with €50 million of this drawn from “variable remuneration”.

Some 33 bankers within the group were paid between €1 million and €2 million, according to the EBA data. A further eight received between €2 million and €3 million. Six were paid between €3 million and €4 million.

The top-paid banker in the Republic received €6.6 million, of which €4.4 million was variable pay.


The data does not specify the institutions that employ the high earners, aside from noting that the individuals work for EU banks and investment firms. This would include many of the international banks that have operations in the Republic.

Meanwhile, the number of bankers and investment professionals in the EU as a whole who earned more than €1 million hit a record in 2021 as investment banking boomed and Brexit pushed more staff from London to the continent.

The ranks of top earners swelled more than 40 per cent to 1,957 in 2021, according to the EBA. It is the highest level for the EU, excluding the City of London, since the EBA began data collection in 2010.

The surge highlights a consequence of Brexit, where senior bankers have had to relocate from London to EU financial hubs.

“This increase is linked to the overall good performance of institutions, in particular in the area of investment banking and trading and sales, continuing relocations of staff from the UK to the EU and a general increase in salaries,” said the EBA.

Italy, France and Spain took the lion’s share of the increase, with 70 per cent, but Germany remains the member state with the largest population of high-earning bank employees, close to 600.

The EBA’s data was collected in August 2022, as most bonuses were awarded between April and June.

Investment bankers were the single largest subgroup, with almost 750 earning above €1 million across the EU. The highest-paid banker in the EU, according to the EBA, was one in Spain who earned between €14 million and €15 million in 2021. – Additional reporting: Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2023

Una McCaffrey

Una McCaffrey

Una McCaffrey is an Assistant Business Editor at The Irish Times