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Friday 21 September 2018

Bruton tops rich list of Dublin TDs - with wealth of nearly €5m

Dublin TD Richard Bruton is estimated to be worth €4.9m
Dublin TD Richard Bruton is estimated to be worth €4.9m

Education Minister Richard Bruton is the wealthiest TD in the capital, with his assets and pension estimated to be almost €5m.

His Dublin Bay North constituency rival, Fianna Fail TD Sean Haughey, is not far behind, with an estimated worth of €4.8m.

The figures are included in a major analysis of TDs' assets, which found that almost half of all TDs in Leinster House are worth more than €1m.

Mr Bruton is the wealthiest Cabinet member and his total of €4.9m includes a public service pension that would cost more than €3m to buy in the private market.

The Fine Gael TD has property and land estimated to be worth around €1.7m, and a portfolio of company shares valued at €117,000.

Transport Minister Shane Ross is the second-wealthiest Cabinet member, with an estimated value of €3.7m.

Dun Laoghaire TD Sean Barrett's wealth is estimated at €3.1m and former tanaiste Frances Fitzgerald is estimated to be worth €3m. Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is valued at €1.2m.

Overall, the Sunday Independent's Political Rich List found there are 73 TDs estimated to be worth more than €1m, but only 11 of them are female.

The research shows the total financial value of assets owned by 123 male TDs is €186m, while the estimated worth of the Dail's 35 female politicians is just €30m. This means the average value of assets owned by male politicians (€1.5m) is almost double that of their female counterparts (€857,000).

The research by the newspaper and financial analyst Karl Deeter examined several sources of publicly-available information to determine the value of assets owned by the country's most senior politicians.

Pensions

It found central to the net worth of most TDs is the gold-plated public service pensions they are entitled to on retiring from political life.

Controversial Independent TD Michael Lowry is estimated to be the Dail's wealthiest politician with a €6.4m value.

The figure represents the combined value of Mr Lowry's pension (€2.1m), business (€2.2m) and property (€2.1m).

Kerry TD Michael Healy-Rae is ranked second on the list with an estimated value of €5.4m.

Fine Gael is the wealthiest political party, with all 50 TDs having a combined wealth of €80m.

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