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Shamrock Rovers 0 Juventus 2

Is this really a moral victory for Ireland or is it once again just “the cracked looking-glass of a servant”?

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NIRSA Report on Irish Property Market Planning

A collection of researchers at the National Institute of Regional and Spatial Analysis (NIRSA), R. Kitchen, J. Gleeson, K. Keaveney, and C. O’ Callaghan, have written a powerful new report on Irish property market policy and land development planning policy, critically examining both policy errors during the 1993-2007 period, during the post-crash period post 2007 (including a critique of NAMA) and making suggestions for the future.  The link is here.

The report has a modern geographers’ perspective and is strongest when discussing zoning policy, development policy, and property-related tax policies, but there is still plenty of things for mainstream economics comments/discussion in the report.

The report makes clear to what a large extent post-1993 property-related government policy, right up until today, is driven by the interests of the property development industry.  Coincidentally (or not) this industry is one of the biggest funders of the dominant party in government during this long period.

I am not sure if I am the correct person to paste up this link, but perhaps others can provide useful comments and replies to comments.  (I do not claim to be a property researcher but to the extent that property is a risky portfolio asset it touches a little bit on my own research area.)

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Costs of Doing Business in Ireland 2010

The recently published NCC study on the costs of doing business in Ireland can be found here.

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Fiscal Policy

Revisiting the NDP

The government has released its revised National Development Plan for the period to 2016.   The documentation includes a short leaflet, Investing for Growth and Jobs: Infrastructure Investment Priorities 2010 – 2016.   With a bit of chutzpah, the document claims the 40 percent cut in capital spending as “stimulus” for the economy.   The emphasis is on new priorities and not on the overall cuts.   Fortunately, the Department of Finance has also released Infrastructure Investment Priorities 2010 – 2016: A Financial Framework, which makes a more sober case for the shift in strategy (see, in particular, Chapters 2 & 3).   The arguments of Colm McCarthy for just-in-time infrastructure provision (based on the time value of money) and more broadly for cost-benefit analysis – as championed on this site and elsewhere by Edgar Morgenroth – would appear to have been influential in the overall approach.   Of course, the precarious state of the public finances looms large behind the change in strategy. 

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The EU’s Relaxed Approach to Bank Stress Testing

The newly released stress test of selected EU-area banks by the Committee of European Bank Supervisors (CEBS) is flawed in its methodology and the results are not a reliable indicator of EU bank sector soundness. A stress test should examine the impact on net portfolio value of extreme but plausible shocks to the key variates explaining net portfolio value.  The CEBS report states proudly and repeatedly that it uses extreme but plausible shocks, and this is true, but it ignores the key-variates criterion of a well-designed stress test.