Blog Archive

Nothing comes from nothing: the case of health

Posted on December 06, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
Health is better than gold or ‘is fearr an tsláinte ná an t-ór’ as the saying goes in Irish. Economists and statisticians tend to think of health as a cost as well as a sphere of activity involving consumption of resources in the present time. Health, however, has two dimensions: (i) It is a state of well-being for which all strive because it concerns body and mind and goes beyond narrow …

Posted in: Government SpendingNorthern Ireland Taxation

NERI seminar: Ireland’s daunting climate change challenge

Posted on December 04, 2015 by Daragh McCarthy

The latest NERI seminar, 'Ireland’s daunting climate change challenge in the period to 2030: how to respond?', was held on 2 December. Joseph Curtin, Research Fellow at the Institute of International and European Affairs on climate policy, provided an overview of Ireland’s climate change challenge within the context of the upcoming Paris COP 21 and EU climate 2030 negotiations. He reviewed …

Posted in: Investment

Life on low pay – new insights

Posted on December 02, 2015 by Micheál Collins

Publication cover - NERI Research inBrief Low Pay Dec 2015
The latest NERI Research inBrief looks at those who are on low pay in the Republic of Ireland. Its key points are  Low pay is more common among: -   female workers; -   younger workers; -   those in the retail, hotel and security sectors; -   single parents; and -   those on temporary contracts. At the household level, a higher proportion of low paid employees are living in households …

Posted in: IncomeJobsWages

What is a prudent fiscal space?

Posted on November 29, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
One of the impacts of the recent economic crisis is that new expressions have been added to the English language, as spoken here. One such example is ‘fiscal space’. When the economy is growing there is, at one and the same time, more demand for public services (more school pupils and more demand for health services for examlpe) as well as less demand for other public services (when there are …

Posted in: Government SpendingInvestmentTaxation

The Flawed currency union

Posted on November 27, 2015 by Tom McDonnell

In the NERI's Quarterly Economic Facts we often compare Irish performance against that of other EU or Euro area countries, for example in areas like the general government balance. While an interesting exercise in itself it is sometimes more useful to sit back and reflect on the bigger picture. The fact is that the Euro area has, in aggregate, underperformed against the United States, as well …

Posted in: Macroeconomics

UK Autumn Statement and Spending Review

Posted on November 25, 2015 by Paul Mac Flynn

The Autumn Statement delivered today by Chancellor of The Exchequer George Osborne will in all likelihood be remembered for one significant U-turn. The dramatic reversal on planned changes to tax credits represents a big win for opponents of the policy in Westminster and beyond. The total proposed saving from tax credits was to be £4.4bn UK wide. The changes would have affected over 120,000 …

Posted in: Government SpendingJobsLiving wageMacroeconomics

NERI Seminar: Fiscal Priorities for Long-Run Growth

Posted on November 20, 2015 by Tom McDonnell

Neri poster
The latest NERI seminar  looked at the Irish economy’s recent performance and considered its medium-and-long-term prospects for growth. Over the course of the presentation a range of policy reforms to increase the economy’s long-run potential output were identified and discussed. Dr McDonnell set out the case for  increased investment in education and skills, particularly early years …

Posted in: Government SpendingInvestmentMacroeconomicsTaxation

Why Northern Ireland needs a real fresh economic start

Posted on November 18, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
While economic recovery is evident in both jurisdictions there has been a worrying acceleration in job losses in Northern Ireland with some very significant losses expected in JTI Galagher and Michelin Tyres, both in Ballymena as well as 100 job losses in the US Engineering company, Caterpillar.  Reflecting trends elsewhere in the retail sector, Dunnes Stores have announced a closure of part of …

Posted in: Northern Ireland Taxation

Economic uncertainty

Posted on November 13, 2015 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI
(this blog was composed prior to the recent tragic events in Paris. My thoughts and prayer are with the people of France and all nations suffering from acts of war and terror).   Best of Times? was the title of a book published by researchers at the ESRI in the summer of 2007.  The book followed on from another work published in 2000 entitled ‘Bust to Boom? The Irish experience of growth and …

What do we really mean by ‘middle earners’?

Posted on November 12, 2015 by Micheál Collins

The recent Budget, and much of the commentary which accompanied it, contained recurring references to ‘middle-earners’ – almost all of it without any basis in the various numbers available on the Irish income and earnings distribution. New data from the Revenue Commissioners, published following Budget 2016, offers a chance for a more informed view of the structure of earnings in Ireland. …

Posted in: IncomeTaxation

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