The Republic of Ireland is in preliminary talks with EU officials for financial support, the BBC has learned.
It is now no longer a matter of whether but when the Irish government formally approaches the European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF) for an estimated 80bn euro bailout.
BBC News website readers in Ireland have been sending in their reaction. Here is a selection of their comments:
I hope this is true, and that it is an end to the lies the government has been telling the people here for the last two years. The bailout of the now nationalised Anglo-Irish bank was said to cost 4bn euros by the finance minister at first, and each few months the estimated costs have been rising and rising. It's now said to cost 30bn, and the other two main banks will probably cost a similar amount. Nick, Cork
Nobody here in Ireland is surprised by this. Our government party, Fianna Fail, has finally bust the country. We have to radically change things here to get rid of the cronyism and corruption. All this is the result of trying to save the banking and construction sectors. Bondholders will get away scot-free and the taxpayer will end up footing the bill. Meanwhile, current government ministers and TD's (MP's) will get to retire on nice pensions. Joseph, Skerries
Even the dogs on the street know the bailout is coming. The 7 December budget should be cancelled and the IMF should come to town ASAP. Irish people are keeping their heads in the sand a bit over this. Our finance minister is like Comical Ali saying everything is OK, while the markets laugh at Ireland. 20% of houses lie empty, while crime and drug abuse is sky high. The government will be voted out eventually, but the opposition is not credible. There are at least 10 years of pain to come. Gavin, Dublin
I support our economy being managed by the EU or IMF. All parties here are too weak to provide leadership on the necessary public expenditure cuts or provide creativity to grow the economy in new areas. The IMF or EU will end the mistrust of politicians and allow the country and decent Irish people to get on with it. We are a strong people who will come back as long as we can bypass the politicians. Kenny Jacobs, Dublin
It is such a sad state of affairs that has led to this. Lack of foresight and perspective on the part of the country as a whole has ended the "Celtic Tiger". A lot of us did not buy into the nonsense of "live now, pay later" but we are all suffering the consequences. Our minister for finance, Brian Lenihan, ran what was effectively a blustering party political broadcast on Newsnight earlier this week and despite Jeremy Paxman's relatively belligerent questioning, left us in no doubt that a degree of self-delusion remains. Michael Stamp, Dublin
I can't claim to know whether or not this will work, but at least it has some potential for job creation, unlike the current budget cuts. A government stimulus package would at least avoid the further reduction in financial credibility that this will inevitably cause. I think a monetary stimulus would have been the best way to get our economy back on track through increasing effective demand, but we can't do that anymore. Terry Flint, Dublin
Amazingly the government and the media elites here are still saying that we have to make massive cuts to sate the markets. Yet everyone outside of Ireland is saying that the cuts are going to worsen our economy. Frankly this government needs to be brought down by any means necessary to save the economy. Lorcan Myles, County Wexford
This is really bad news. Why should the Irish taxpayer have to bail out reckless private banks to compensate bond holders who were paid to take risk? Ireland has been ruined by bad government and greed and this is the last straw. John O'Brien, Limerick
I think the international media is calling it too early. We don't need the money until the middle of next year. It seems this sudden rise in yields have spooked the EU and the Irish government into being ready for a bailout as soon as is needed. There's still hope that the four year plan, the budget, a stress test in the new year and a highly likely general election will all happen before we need to go to the markets, and will bring the yields down to an affordable level. Seosamh Kennedy, Dublin