Economic survey predicts slow growth and increased unemployment

11th January 2013

The Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI) has predicted annual GDP growth of less than 1% per annum over the next two years, and a further increase in unemployment in 2013 and 2014.

The projections were published this week in its latest Quarterly Economic Observer and Quarterly Economic Facts. The economic think-tank, which is affiliated to the Ictu and trade union funded,  also predicts a further likely contraction of the domestic economy following Budget 2013. The analysis questions the Government’s capacity to reach its fiscal targets in 2015 and its ability to limit increases in the national debt without significant changes in its policy approach and an improvement in international conditions.

The findings in the report are in contrast to widespread speculation about ‘green shoots’ in Ireland’s economy following a boost in consumer confidence and spending in December 2012, some stabilisation of house prices in Dublin, and some initial success in returning to the bond markets.

The report also outlines details on the shape of Ireland’s income distribution including that:

  • 33% of household have a gross income of less than €30,000
  • 56% of households have a gross income of less than €50,000
  • 62% of households have a gross income below the average household income
  • The top 30% of households have a gross income of more than €70,000 per annum
  • The top 20% of households have a gross income of more than €80,000 per annum
  • 14% of household have a gross income above €100,000 per annum
  • 2% of households have gross incomes above €200,000 per annum

Commenting on the publication, NERI Senior Researcher Dr Micheál Collins pointed out that the details outlined in the publication provide an insight into the often misunderstood distribution of income in Ireland and how concentrated household incomes are below €50,000. An analysis of the figures suggests that income distribution across the public sector closely reflects the income distribution across all sectors nationally.