Blog Archive

Big Idea: A Basic Income for Northern Ireland

Posted on August 18, 2016 by Micheál Collins

nicva image big ideas
NICVA held a Festival of Economics in Belfast on Friday August 12th. Among the big ideas discussed was Basic Income. The slides below are from my 2014 presentation to a NICVA masterclass on Basic Income. They explore the issue in the context of Northern Ireland, looking at the levels, costs, and likely challenges. They should also serve as a useful starting point for further work in this area. It …

Posted in: IncomeInequalityNorthern Ireland

Slides from NERI Seminar on The Tax & Benefits System from a Lifetime Perspective

Posted on July 14, 2016 by Louisa O'Brien

Barra Roantree presentation
Slides from yesterday's NERI Seminar on the Tax & Benefits System from a Lifetime Perspective delivered by Barra Roantree, IFS, London. 

Posted in: Taxation

70,000 workers are on the Minimum Wage

Posted on July 13, 2016 by Micheál Collins

Publication cover - Employees on the Minimum Wage in the ROI NERI WP37
A new NERI research paper estimates the number of workers on the minimum wage and further profiles these workers by gender, by the sector they work in and by their employment status (full-time, part-time, permanent, temporary etc). The data, which is for 2014 (the latest available), complements an earlier paper examining the situation in 2013. The key findings from the paper are: There are …

Posted in: GenderIncomeInequalityJobsWages

2016 Living Wage: no change, yet lots of change

Posted on July 11, 2016 by Micheál Collins

The 2016 Living Wage for the Republic of Ireland has been calculated by the Living Wage Technical Group. It is €11.50 per hour. The rate is unchanged from 2015. Over the past year there have been decreases in living costs for most items included in the living wage calculation. However, these decreases have been wiped out by increases in housing costs. The overall effect is an unchanged hourly …

Posted in: IncomeInequalityJobsLabour costsLiving wageWages

Four years of commentary

Posted on July 10, 2016

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Since the first Quarterly Economic Observer (QEO) published by the newly established Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI) in March 2012 we have published 18 editions including the latest released last week (Summer 2016). Our initial Quarterly, in March 2012, focussed on the theme of investment. As the both parts of Ireland remained mired in an investment crisis in 2011/12 the first QEO …

Cheapness is not competitiveness

Posted on July 01, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
With the economic and political fallout from Brexit taking its toll voices have been raised – not surprisingly – to argue against wage increases in the Republic of Ireland. The recent National Economic Dialogue in Dublin was an occasion for such an argument with its proponents claiming to cite data on wage costs. Unfortunately, time did not permit a more careful consideration of the facts. …

More myth busting

Posted on June 24, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Notwithstanding the highly significant events of recent days and the fall out from the recent UK referendum on EU membership this week’s Monday Blog is focussed on personal taxation trends over time in the Republic of Ireland. (Attention will be given to the implications of UK exit from the EU in the forthcoming NERI Quarterly Economic Observer. Users of the NERI blog site may also refer to a …

Fiscal Space: A Short Primer

Posted on June 23, 2016 by Tom McDonnell

Government Buildings
The parameters for Budget 2017 are set by the requirements of the preventive arm of the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP). The preventive arm is assessed under two main pillars. These are the Structural Balance Rule and the Expenditure Benchmark Rule. A balanced budget in structural terms is a balanced budget after adjusting for the cyclical position of the economy and is calculated net of once-off …

Posted in: Government SpendingInvestmentMacroeconomicsTaxation

That time of year again

Posted on June 17, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
It is that time of year again. Like in the neighbouring island we drive on the left hand side of the road (as a general rule) and have an Annual Big Day (known as Budget Day) when the Minister for Finance announces the budget for the coming year. There is a lead in of many months of discussion in which various groups make ‘submissions’ on what should be prioritised by way of spending or …

What fiscal space?

Posted on June 10, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
In many respects the debate about ‘fiscal space’ is a major turn off for most people as it employs language, terms and concepts that are mechanical, contrived and highly dependent on questionable assumptions. Most policy makers tend to leave the technical details to specialist staff while they get on with the bigger picture on the economy and public finances. The main role of ‘fiscal …

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