Irish economy at risk

The National Competitiveness Council, or NCC, is an organization that collects, analyzes, and reports data and statistics about the Irish government. In general, it focuses on comparisons of the growth and sustainability across the European Union. This organization has looked into the sustainability of economic health across a multitude of different scenarios. 

As of late, this organization has noted that the Irish economy is becoming too dependent on a small number of domestic firms that fall within similar sectors of the business market. Although it is always a positive to support your home companies, there are some major issues that may come from this increased reliance. 

To begin, Ireland’s economic dependence has been primarily within the goods and services export sectors. There has been a huge focus on pharmaceutical and chemicals being exported, with around 58pc of total exports in 2018 being in this sector; in 2017 it was at 45pc. Computer services are also dominating the market, making up 43pc in 2018, which was 3pc lower than in 2017. These bulk exports make up a huge part of the …

Read More

SME debt rises

Debt can come from a variety of places, especially when you are working within the confines of a business and it’s very specific budget. Many times, debt for these institutions is in the form of owed money; this owed money was usually a loan from the bank. 

Within the recent years, the prices of these loans, or borrowing costs, have increased. The first three months of 2019 have seen significant growth in this area, despite economist’s predictions that interest rates would be falling within the year. 

SME’s, or small-to-medium enterprises, saw these high borrowing costs as a sign that they should proceed with extreme caution when working within the borrowing market. These businesses already pay some of the highest interest rates in the European Union and have made sure to be well educated on the possibilities of economic changes or interest hikes on their finances. 

Small-to-medium enterprises are extremely important to have in any market, given that they play a key role in employment. Small enterprises are defined as having less than 50 employees and have an annual turnover or …

Read More

Mortgage lending trends

Bank’s lending practices have been on a rollercoaster ride that has yet to have slowed down. Due to many different economic factors, the trends tend to increase and then decrease with ease over short periods of time. The factor that has the most influence on these decisions by the bank is Brexit. Behind this name, there lies an endless amount of disruptions that are unpredictable in categorical and economic related areas and loom over every decision that the bank makes.

In general, Brexit has slowed down the lending process. That being said, there are some times in which Brexit brings about significant positive changes in the market. After the Brexit deadline was extended to October 31, 2019, there was a significant rise in the amount of lending. This change in some ways rebooted the market, given that the beginning of 2019 had a slow start. 

After the extension, approvals for mortgages increased by 10pc for the year on year comparisons. There were 4,926 loans that had been approved, totaling up to €1.14 billion according to the Banking and Payments Federation …

Read More

June Unemployment Statistics

Ireland seems to have hit as close to full employment as possible as rates stay constant from May to June of 2019. Full employment is a condition of the economy in which every person who is currently able to work and is seeking employment is employed.   

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) recently released their monthly unemployment report which included details in regards to the changes that have occurred month to month in 2019, as well as a comparison between June 2018 and 2019 statistics. According to these comparisons, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate from May to June 2019 has stayed at a constant 4.5pc unemployed. On a yearly basis, there has been a significant decrease of 1.4pc; June 2018 was at 5.9pc while June 2019 is at 4.5pc. 

This percentage change shows a significant change in the amount of seasonally adjusted number of persons unemployed from 140,200 people in 2018 to 109,700 in 2019, which is a 30,500 person decrease. There are many reasons for a decrease in unemployment including immigration and emigration or businesses and people, the creation of …

Read More

Dublin’s investment in mutual funds

Risk and reward, these two words are correlated heavily with the trading of stocks and bonds. Individual stocks and bonds tend to have higher personal risk, but also higher possibility for rewards. Mutual funds are another type of lower risk investment where you and other people have the opportunity to invest money or capital in a collective fund. This group of people’s money is then invested by a fund manager in a diversified array of stocks, bonds, futures, currencies, treasuries and money market securities that they believe will do well. 

By investing with other people, you are reducing the amount of risk that will be on your own assets. Although this is positive, the payouts tend to be smaller because they are distributed across all of the investors. 

There are many benefits to investing in this product. For one, this type of fund offers built-in diversification of investment portfolio; you are not putting all of your eggs in one basket, which can offset possible downfalls in one category with growth in another. Another being that these funds are chosen by …

Read More

Businesses prepare for Brexit

Brexit poses a threat to many multinational companies that are headquartered in the United Kingdom. As of now, these companies are taking into consideration many economic and political factors that will help them make the decision to stay in the UK or relocate to a different country inside of the European Union. 

Ecclesiastical, a 130 year old niche insurance company, is one of the many who have begun looking into operation in other companies, although they are not interested in moving their headquarters out of the UK. In order to preemptively bridge the operational divide between the EU and the UK, Ecclesiastical has been working to receive clearance to operate as a third-country branch in Ireland; they have recently been approved by the Irish government. 

There are many requirements that must be fulfilled in order for this to be approved. Some of the most important of those being that the company must set up a full time presence in the country while complying with a minimum capital requirement being held within the Irish State by the Irish High Court as …

Read More

Energia continues to invest in Ireland

Energia, a Dublin based energy company, parented by the Viridian Group, has recently announced that it will be investing €3 billion in Irish renewable energy over the next five years. These figures show promise of the creation of 200 more jobs directly within the organization. Additionally, there is likely to be a creation of between 3,000 and 5,000 construction jobs, given the sheer amount of huge projects that will soon be under way. 

Many of the promised projects include a focus on the creation of renewable energy. This goes hand in hand with the Irish government’s plans to increase the country’s consumption of renewable energy by making it the most accessible and cost efficient type of electricity generator. The government hopes to increase renewable energy in the electricity market from 30 to 70pc by the year 2020, according to the Climate Action Plan. 

The creation of onshore and offshore wind farms, solar power, hydrogen fuel generation, bio-energy facilities and the smart grid are all huge factors steps towards the fulfillment of this governmental initiative.  

What is most interesting about this …

Read More

Sizing up the UK’s economy

 The UK’s largest independent producer of unbiased statistical data, the Office for National Statistics, has recently released a new report claiming that through their investigations they uncovered that the economy was £26 billion larger than previously indicated. 

This nation’s economy is the fifth largest in the world, behind the United States, China, Japan and Germany. Their economic output usually comes in each year at around $2.8 trillion/ €2.5 trillion according to statistics published by the International Monetary Fund. 

Additionally, the annual gross domestic product growth has been shown to have increased by 0.1 more than what was expected every year since 1997. This 21 year lag in the updating of GDP growth has been a huge factor in the sudden uncovering of the £26 billion in addition funds. 

Although these statistics seem promising, the Office for National Statistics only included data up to a few months after the initial process of Brexit. The data that came after this most likely would have drawn down these figures, making the GDP expansion less significant than previously. 

In recent years, Britain’s GDP has …

Read More

CSO reports employment increases

March of 2012 marked one one of the highest rates of unemployment since the beginning of the 2000s. January 2012 was the peak, with unemployment reaching a whopping 16pc of the entire willing and able working population. 

Since then, unemployment rates have been decreasing steadily by 2-3pc every 2 years. From 2013 to Q1 of 2019, there was a was a 21.7pc increase, or 409,900 people, increase in employment; this percentage was almost entirely made of full time employment gains. 

The total number of people that are employed now is 2,301,900, of which “1,828,900 or 79.5pc were in full-time employment while 473,000 or 20.5pc were in part-time employment” according to the Central Statistics Office (CSO). 

Of these increases, there was growth in every one of the ten recorded occupational groups. Some of these groups include managers, directors and seniors, misc. Professionals, associate professional and technical, administrative and secretarial, and skill trade among many others. 

Another statistic that has shown significant improvement is that of the 473,000 people who are employed part time, only 16.1pc of these people were so because …

Read More

Brexit budget seems uncertain

The time is coming once again for the Irish government to publish its annual Summer Economic Statement, which will be composed mostly by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe. This years budget will be especially tricky, given the ominous threat of Brexit on the horizon. 

Donohoe’s strategy to combat the issues that are likely to arise given the likely succession of the United Kingdom from the European Union are related to the type of Brexit that occurs. According to the Economics and Social Institute, there are three scenarios that should likely be considered when drawing up a detailed economic plan for the future. 

In general, it is an ideal practice to compare all of these possibilities to a counterfactual scenario where no succession occurs. The three main possibilities, surrounded by economic and political uncertainty, are deal, no-deal, and disorderly no-deal. 

The deal scenario is described as the “UK making an orderly agreed exit from the EU” which “ involves a transition period covering the years 2019 and 2020, and a free trade agreement between the UK and the EU27 thereafter.”

The no-deal …

Read More