Blog Archive

External shocks - change the detail but no need to rewrite the productivity playbook

Posted on November 04, 2016 by Tom McDonnell

The vulnerability of the Republic of Ireland economy to external shifts and shocks was brought home in 2016 in at least two ways. While the potential Brexit from the European Union (EU) has unclear political implications, it has almost certainly negative economic implications. At the same time, the opening shots of an international or at least EU clamp down on aggressive tax avoidance has exposed …

Posted in: Government SpendingInvestmentMacroeconomics

Northern Ireland and the Living Wage in 2016

Posted on November 04, 2016 by Paul Mac Flynn

Last week the 2016 Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings for Northern Ireland was released and some interesting results emerged. The largest increase in wages was bottom 10% of employees reflecting a welcome boost from the introduction of the National Living Wage. However, the National Living Wage should also not be confused with the real Living Wage, for which the latest rate was announced last …

Posted in: Living wageNorthern Ireland Wages

Cherishing the children's teeth equally?

Posted on November 04, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The term ‘social wage’ is sometimes used to refer to those public goods and services consumed by workers and their families.  Apart from wages earned over a given period we enjoy the benefits of ‘free’ or heavily subsidised services in areas such as education and health (although the balance has changed over time and is tilted towards private sources in the Republic of Ireland relative …

A Tale of Two Cities

Posted on October 28, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” – the opening line of Charles Dicken’s The Tale of Two Cities is a familiar one. It could be applied to the fall-out from the ‘Brexit’ vote in the UK on 23 rd June. If UK policy makers, analysts and the general public were not exactly prepared and informed for what would happen, what of Irish policy makers, analysts and the general …

Slides from NERI Post Budget Seminar - October, 2016

Posted on October 25, 2016

Slides from the NERI Post Budget Seminar held in the INTO Learning Centre, 38 Parnell Square, Dublin 1 on Wednesday 19th October.  The presentations were delivered by Eamon Murphy, Social Justice Ireland, Dr Mary P Murphy, NUI Maynooth and Michael Taft, Unite the Union. Above presentation by Eamon Murphy, Social Justice Ireland. Above presentation by Dr Mary P Murphy, NUI Maynooth. Above …

Posted in: TaxationWages

Getting ready for Brexit

Posted on October 21, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The prospect of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union presents a once-in-a-generation challenge for the Northern Ireland Executive, the Irish Government and citizens across this island.  A recent paper by economists at the Department of Finance [UK EU Exit – An Exposure Analysis of Sectors of the Irish Economy] summarises the situation facing producers south of the border in a very …

Budget 2017 - the good, the bad and the ugly

Posted on October 16, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The draft budget for 2017 for the Republic of Ireland will now be submitted to the European Commission for approval. In the meantime, the real work in relation to the implementation of Budget 2017 proposals will involve various deliberations and discussions leading to the Finance Bill in a number of weeks as well as various initiatives and announcements on foot of the proposals in ‘Budget …

The 'squeezed middle' ?

Posted on October 06, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
The squeezed middle is one of those terms that has entered popular discourse in Ireland as well as abroad. Political and media pundits refer, at ease, to the ‘squeezed middle’ who are said to have borne the brunt of the recent recession or fiscal austerity and have lost out compared to those on lower incomes or those on very high incomes.  The problem is twofold: (i) nearly everyone in the …

Slides from NERI Seminar on Tax Expenditure on Occupational Pensions in Ireland: Relevance, Cost and Distribution

Posted on October 04, 2016 by Louisa O'Brien

Slides from Wednesday 28th September, NERI Seminar on Occupational Pensions in Ireland: Relevance, Cost and Distribution by Dr Micheal Collins (UCD) and Prof Gerard Hughes (TCD).  

Posted in: Income

Tax heresies and half-baked truths

Posted on October 01, 2016 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Every heresy begins with a half-baked truth.  Recent weeks have seen claims that the overall level of personal taxation in the Republic of Ireland is too high and that particular groups have been unduly burdened especially since the onset of fiscal austerity in 2009.  Certainly, taxes were increased over the period from 2009 to 2013.  However, many commentators do not point out that very …

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