Brexit’s Largest Impact

Uncertainty is the overwhelming feeling that Brexit has brought onto the entirety of the EU. Here in Ireland, we are no exception. The fear of a large economic downturn is looming, and it seems everyone is fixated on what will happen when October 31st comes around.

The Irish economy as a whole was predicted to grow 4.1% in 2019 and forecasted an increase in the GDP of 3.7% in 2020 according to the European Commission. This however was predicted without considering the effect of a hard exit by the UK. A hard exit could bring an economic fall out consisting of lowered income levels, and higher unemployment rates. Experts from the Economic and Social Research Institute suggest that these conditions can lower the intense growth of property prices since the low in 2013. The Central Statistics Office says this growth has been just over 86% within those 6 years. Housing demand is likely to lower, affecting mortgage companies, brokers, and families trying to sell or relocate.

However, the housing industry will likely not be the hardest hit industry from the …

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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 …

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Childcare challenges

Having a child can be an extremely rewarding experience, but it is not without its challenges. For most people, it is a pivotal step towards full adulthood and requires a great deal of contemplation in regards to finances and time availability. 

The most recent census statistics have proven that having children is a common occurrence for young Irish adults, making Ireland’s under under-five population one of the highest in the 38 European Union countries that were examined; 398,000 children, or 7pc of the Irish population, is made up of young children.

A Eurydice report , published in 2019, focused heavily on examining early childhood education and care in European nations noted that Ireland is one of four countries to have extremely high child care rates, especially for those under the age of three. The other three countries with high costs are the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland. 

This sheer number of children within Ireland comes as a somewhat shock to economists, who note that the costliness of childcare exceeds almost every other European country. There are a multitude of …

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Heightening Taxes to Boost Spending

According to the Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI), the government needs to look at generating extra funding for housing. How do you generate additional government funding? Taxes.

The need for increased spending on housing can be gained from heightening employer-related PRSI, property, gift and inheritance, and carbon taxes. Irelands government spending and tax revenue amounts to much lower than the average EU spending and revenue.

According to the Department of Finance, in 2018 just over €55.5 billion was received by the Exchequer. Tax on income and wealth amounted to 10.5% of the Irish GDP in 2017, while tax on individual or household income amounted to 7.3%.

Countries in the EU that have progressively developed more stable housing and social housing taxes and tax revenues are comparatively much higher than Irelands. For example, Denmark has established housing that over 22% of dwellings are social rented. Denmark’s tax on income and wealth amounts to 29.7% of their GDP and tax on individual or household income equates to 25.4% of Danish GDP.  Denmark exemplifies a similar country in the EU where the housing market …

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Brexit takes more than just UK funds

As we are all well aware of by now, Brexit may affect the Irish economy. Although, one key part of the economy that we tend to overlook when it comes to this massive change is construction, which can and does play a significant role in our day-to-day life decisions.

Construction is much more intricate than just having laborers come in, swing around some tools, and build a structure. Specifics in supply and demand of laborers, resources, time, materials, consumers, money and a multitude of others aspects all play a part in construction outputs.

If Brexit is to occur, especially a no deal Brexit, there are a number of barriers that can arise. These barriers can and will be placed on construction companies, especially those currently working on a project. Some of these barriers include a reduced labor force, slower materials delivery, and possible construction penalties.

What current construction workers point out is that there is a steady decline in the amount of workers each year, and an even steadier decline in quality construction workers. If a hard …

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Boom or bubble and will it bust or burst?

This is a piece that Karl wrote for the Irish Sun, it relates to a piece that was the lead story for the paper last week.

(Begins)

There is a lot of talk that we have a ‘property bubble forming’, with virtually no supply, a growing population and a trend towards smaller households as things like separation and divorce become more common, it simply lacks ‘bubble’ qualifications.

But it does have ‘boom’ written all over it, we have had many such booms and busts in Irish history, I have spent much of the last two years researching just this very thing with Frank Quinn from Blackrock College of Further Education.

We have had many price rises and falls in the last 300 years, often we saw that after a crash the next boom would result in overcrowding because back then, as now, supply became ‘short’ in the areas that it was needed.

A boom is about rapid price appreciation, it doesn’t mean you have a bubble. You could have the price of anything boom and there wouldn’t be a bubble, …

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Moncrieff Show: news review on economic matters 25th August 2014

The Moncrieff Show on Newstalk had us on to talk about interest rates, economics and taxation. In the unmistakable style that Sean Moncrieff is known for, suffice to say, he kept Karl on his toes!

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Rent control, a misguided policy that just won’t go away

The idea of rent control is always a compelling one, that by decree you simply say ‘the price can’t rise’ and then it doesn’t. That this is a proven myth rarely factors in, take cities in the USA with rent control and you’ll also see that these same cities have some of the highest rents (like San Francisco and New York) because all rent control does is confer a transfer onto the incumbent renters.

When it happens for long enough you eventually get a disproportionate cost being carried by some cohorts who become structurally less well off because they face vastly different cost bases in rents even though they may earn an identical wage to their neighbour. It’s no wonder there was even a Mayoral Candidate in New York who’s party was named ‘Rent is too damn high!‘. Check out his debating style which is memorable if nothing else.

If housing cost control was a good idea then why not enforce …

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