CSO: Institutional Sectoral Accounts

The CSO has released institutional sectoral accounts for 2009 – the release is here.  These detailed data provide a lot of useful information about the shifts in income and savings in recent years.  Among the highlights:

  • Household net saving ratio jumped from 3.9% in 2008 to 12.3% in 2009. Behind this ratio: net disposable income fell by €2.1 billion but consumption fell by €10 billion.
  • The Net Operating Surplus (profitability) of Financial Corporations and Non-Financial Corporations fell by over 22% and 6% respectively, between 2008 and 2009. Investment by Non-Financial corporations fell from €13bn to €7bn over the same period. Investment by Financial Corporations also declined – from €0.9bn in 2008 to €0.6bn in 2009

30 thoughts on “CSO: Institutional Sectoral Accounts”

  1. The depression continues to deepen.

    Does the EZ and ECB prevent Ireland from reacting to maintain employment at the “natural” level?

    Are there any native controls open to the Irish that can fund productive investment schemes?

    Actually, there might be, using the punt. An internal currency issued to those who are resident in Ireland for the purpose of paying certain additional taxes and released to fund additional works! Note, despite my advocacy of von Mises, I am willing to accept the utility of fiat currencies of a limited type! After the depression passes. the taxes will have to be paid in euro, as all punts will have been collected!

    A “second derivative” fiat currency?

  2. These figures confirm all that I have posted here. They undermine the bubble of hysteria being whipped up by the media and by some economists. As I result, I confidently predict: (a) they will get little attention in today’s media (b) this thread will get few posts (in fact, I will not be at all surprised if mine is the final one on this thread).

    In summary, the figures show:

    (a) Unlike in the last two recessions in Ireland, in the late 1950s and in the mid-1980s, real incomes have hardly fallen at all in this recession. After-tax household income fell by 2.3% in 2009. But, there was negative inflation of about the same in 2009. So, in real terms after-tax household income was virtually the same in 2009 as in 2008.

    (b) The decline in consumer spending was due entirely to a massive increase in the amount households save. The size of the increase in Ireland in a single year, from 3.9% in 2008 to 12.3% in 2009, is unprecedented in virtually any country in modern times. Ireland’s household savings ratio is now miles above that in countries like the US and the UK. If either of these countries had had a similar increase in the household savings ratio, they too would have seen a similar fall in consumer spending. As I have repeatedly pointed out, manufacturing output, merchandise and services exports have all performed outstandingly well in this recession. All of them are now back above their pre-recession peaks. Ireland is the only EU country in which this has been achieved. Unlike other countries, where basic production and exports fell, Ireland’s recession has been due almost entirely to a frightened population saving more.

    We need to ask why.

    I’d say it is the George Lee/David McWilliams/Morgan Kelly effect. In other words, if a country is mad enough to hand over its media, lock, stock and barrel, to nutters and cranks who deluge the population 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year, with propaganda to the effect that they are economically doomed, then quite naturally the population will grow fearful and start hoarding their money rather than spending it. That’s what the above intended and, full marks to them, they have succeeded.

    However, there are two sides to a coin. The household savings ratio in Ireland is now so high that there is a clear potential for an upsurge in consumer spending once the media-generated hysteria ends (I imagine the media will pull out all the stops to ensure that this isn’t before the election). A fall in the household savings ratio from 12.3% to even 8% or 9%, far above its pre-recession level, would, when allied to the ongoing rapid growth in exports, produce a very large increase in consumer spending and GDP. Indeed, we can say that such an increase is inevitable in the not-too-distant future because savings are cumulative and households simply don’t need to save 12.3% of their income year after year. The task for the government now, one in which they have so far failed miserably, is to get this to occur sooner rather than later, by steadying people’s nerves, highlighting the numerous positive features of the economy (which I have posted on other threads), and get people spending again. Not a wild splurge of spending based on borrowing, but a significant increase in spending based on a reduction in their savings ratio from an exceptionally high level (12.3%) to a still moderately high level (8% to 9%).

    (c) The idea that Ireland is going bust or increasingly needing to borrow from foreigners is exploded by these figures. The reality: Irish households are saving far more, government borrowing is being increasingly financed by these savings, dependence on borrowing from foreigners is falling as a larger share of government borrowing is financed by the savings of Irish households. The balance-of-payments is moving towards surplus, probably within the next year. That is the point at which Irish lending to foreigners exceeds Irish borrowing from foreigners. The myth that Ireland is about to go bust will be impossible to maintain beyond that point.

  3. Ah, the Black Knight returns. It’s only a flesh wound after all. Good to see that George Lee has been rehabilitated and is now back in the pantheon (pandemonicon?) of ” who caused the crash”. And there was ff thinking it was Lehman brothers, still.
    Tell me John, if things are so spiffing, why won’t those nasty nasty

  4. Oh for an edit function
    Nasty nasty bond traders listen? Why won’t they see that the fundements, as you outline, are sound and these ebbs and flows are just that. Or are they in the conspiracy also?

  5. @Brian Lucey

    Why do you never debate points at the detailed statistical level? Your posts on this site consist almost entirely of very short comments made up of trivia or smartass one-liners. They have about the same intellectual content as comments directed at referees from the terraces in football matches. Is statistics not your forte? Is that what we pay our taxes for?

    The CSO published the sectoral accounts for the Irish economy in 2009 yesterday. These are very important accounts for understanding the Irish economy and contain masses of figures. Philip Lane has opened a thread on these accounts, presumably in the hope of stimulating some intelligent debate on them. So far, I am the only one to attempt this. I can’t see that Pat Donnelly’s post or your post fit into the category of ‘intelligent debate’ that one must assume Philip hoped for when he opened the thread quite late on last night (apologies if anyone has since posted an intelligent comment that I haven’t seen yet because of typing this). I have actually gone to the trouble of studying the figures in the link that Philip Lane posted (have you?), and made a number of points based on my analysis of these figures (relating to household savings ratio in 2009, household income in 2009, consumer spending in 2009, source of financing of government borrowing in 2009, trend in the balance-of-payments, and so on). In other words, I have taken the thread, that Philip Lane went to the trouble of posting here, seriously and tried to analyse it statistically as best I can. If you are able to do likewise, or to refute any of my points statistically, please do so. There is unlimited space on this site for making any points you wish to make, and, unlike what you admitted about yourself some weeks ago, I and a few others here have more than a 3-line attention span, so will be able to study any points you wish to make. If you are unable to debate economic statistics at that level, you should consider whether or not a site called Irisheconomy.ie is suitable for you, or whether politics.ie might not be a better outlet for your wit and sarcasm.

  6. @BL: That EDIT function? I concur. Also, I seem to rem a useful SpellCheck function as well. Whom do I lobby?

    Musing over my Museli: Those savings figures. What are the Y-o-Y values (not those %s) of actual deposits in a savings a/c? This is money that is available.

    Ditto for personal debt levels, the real Y-o-Y decline would give an indication of the amount of money that was destroyed (a def of Deflation I believe).

    Raw data anyone.

    @JtO: Anecdotal (Mark I Eyeball) evidence from the boonies John: Things be bad!!

    Brian P

  7. @JtO
    Prolixity does not a serious analyst make. One liners may be to the point and based on analysis not revealed here – this is a blog, not an academic journal.
    You are confusing gross and net concepts and arguing from accounting identies, not behavioural relationships. You describe numbers well but have no understanding of the economics underlying them.
    Irish consumers could indeed fund a large part of the deficit if they so choose. But they ain’t buying a single Irish government bond – nobody is. Nor is there any sign of them doing so. A balance of payments surplus does indeed mean that we are acquiring, net, more claims on foreigners. In gross terms those claims are likely to be even larger – Irish consumers, like international bond investors, are voting with their money. And they are not voting for you.

  8. Ah but John. How do you know what I do and dont read. Your confusing output (what I say) with Input (why I say it). Im sure its wonderful up there in NornIron. Meanwhile, the case studies (sounds so much better than anecdote BP nuh?) from here are…its bad. You fall into the quite common habit of looking at lots of large woody stemmed apically dominant plants and not pulling back to ask – is there a wood around here?
    Any comment on the bond yields? Are they all smartass oneliner shallow types also…

  9. @Simpleton

    You describe numbers well but have no understanding of the economics underlying them.

    JTO again:

    I understand economics perfectly. Its not rocket science. Its not even science. Compared to the work I get paid to do, its child’s play. Its economists who don’t understand statistics. That’s why their forecasts are usually so abysmally wrong. Compare my forecasts for export growth in 2010 with those of the Dept of Finance, Central Bank and ESRI. Ditto for migration, industrial output, GDP in 2010.

    @Simpleton

    Irish consumers could indeed fund a large part of the deficit if they so choose. But they ain’t buying a single Irish government bond – nobody is.

    JTO again:

    Another example of economists making wildly inaccurate and wildly exaggerated claims, when, if they bothered to check the statistics, they would find that they are untrue. Statistical precision is not Irish economists’ strongpoint. Check the statistics. As I’m sure Eoin could verify, Irish bond auctions were hugely over-subscribed in 2010, so much so that the government is fully funded until near mid-2011 and doesn’t need to have any more bond auctions until then. Most economists have been scratching their heads in wonder and amazement at this. It simply shouldn’t be happening. But, if they bother to check out and analyse the available statistics, they would understand why the bond auctions have all been over-subscribed in 2010. Quite simply, the very thing highlighted in yesterday’s CSO report which I drew attention to, namely a huge increase in the amount of savings of Irish households, which now need an outlet.

    @Brian Lucey

    Im sure its wonderful up there in NornIron.

    JTO again:

    Another post from you that is full of waffle and says nothing: “NornIron”,
    “anecdote BP”, “large woody stemmed apically dominant plants”, “is there a wood around here?” Haven’t a clue what you are on about.

    Where is this absurd pace called ‘NornIron’ that you keep referring to? I never heard of it. Are you referring to north of the artificial and temporary border? Of what relevance is it to the various threads to keep bringing this up, time after time? Some posters here post from London, from US, from Australia, from Malaysia. You never mention their locations when replying to their comments. Only ‘NornIron’ keeps getting raised. I guess your obsession with people coming from that location stems from the fact that Kerry are invariably thrashed when they play teams from ‘NornIron’ at Croke Park. Understandable.

  10. JtO

    There’s a clue in the data. Only those who incomes exceed their necessary expenditures are in a position to save. The poorest cannot save as they have no discretionary spending. Aggregate measures of household incomes cannot capture the changes in disposable incomes by income groups.

    In 2008, the bottom 4 income deciles derived more than 50% of their disposable income for transfers. Cutting their entitlements in a recessin cuts the incomes of those who are obliged to spend, while frightening everyone else into increased saving, just like the textbook says. Other European countries who maintained these transfers or even increased them, did not experience this calamitous decline in consumption.

    That’s why in a recession, rational policy is to increase targeted transfers to the poor, if necessary by revenue-neutral taxes on the rich, as the former have a much higher propensty to consume.

    In the words of this IMF study, investment, ‘either govt. investment expenditure and/or targeted transfers would have sizeable multiplier effects on the economy.’

    http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/spn/2009/spn0903.pdf

    Concluding Remarks, p.16

    CSO is due to publish the SILC next month. There you will find the cause of the collapse in personal consumption/increased savings ratio. And it seems likely it will happen all over again. Not much cause for optimism.

  11. Increase in household savings/drop in retail spending = genuine fear (and it doesn’t need to be media induced JtO).

    You only have to go out and speak to ‘real’, ‘ordinary’ people. They are not daft. They can see for themselves that this country and/or their employer have problems and the only way they can hedge is to stick as much money in the savings account as they can afford to every month and pay down debt where and when they can. It’s an understandable reaction, especially from people with families.

    Speaking to several people (anecdotal I know but I get a consistent message nevertheless), they’ve already seen the banks and building societies raise mortgage interest this year independently of any ECB rate rise and they are worried that they are going to do it again and again as another mechanism to get the public/customer to pay for the problems. These good honest folk are saving now so that they can afford to make the increased mortgage payments next year (as they can’t really restructure their debts, default or just generally walk away from them/declare themselves bankrupt in more favourable US climate/sign over all the assets to the spouse/etc.).

    There is also still a real fear of more job losses in 2011 that’s making working people stash money away in case it happens to them. I was just speaking to a director of a well known life company this morning about the 14% drop in sales and words like “making savings”, “restructuring” and “outsourcing” littered the conversation.

    This country is full of companes that are a bit like the government – hanging on in there in the hope that something (an upturn) changes.
    Their employees know that. At the same life company as above, you now have to get a director to sign off on being allowed to do colour printing (and there are many other examples of similar things in other places)! Things like that suggest to me that the writing is on the wall in ones place of employement.

    An even worse conversation this morning was with a 56-year-old man who lost his battle to continue self-employment nearly two years ago and hasn’t been able to find a job since (and doesn’t get benefits). His savings ran out last month and he can’t afford to pay the mortgage this month. His wife doesn’t work and he has two teenagers in full time education. He’s basically been giving his savings to the bank month by month for the past two years. No doubt they will now grind him into the ground “pour encouragement les autres”.

    And people wonder why the savings rate has gone up and think they should be out there spending it to create some kind of consumer-led recover? Streuth.

  12. @JtO,

    Your tenacity and optimisim are remarkable, but you’re swiping at the wrong targets.

    We need international bond investors to look kindly on us; increased domestic saving – even if it were all applied – will not finance the fiscal gap.

    As I’ve commented elsewhere, in the aftermath of probably one of the most spectacular economic and banking blowouts in modern history, what changes in institutions, process and personnel do they see?

    Well, let’s see. Two of the domestic banks are dead as the dodo and the remainder, to varying extents, are wards of the state – with a huge continuing draw on fiscal resources. We have NAMA preventing needed adjustments in rents and property prices and a new CB Governor and Financial Regulator who are doing what the job says on the tin. The MoF/DoF have acquired two new economic advisers. We’ve had numerous inquiries, task forces, review groups, but nothing substantive has emerged – or been implemented. Some sectors of the economy are in fine fettle – as you continuously point out, but others are dysfunctional beyond belief. The ’social partners’ have drawn the curtains in the railway carriage and are pretending the train is still moving. The same government is in office – but not in power; and is contemplating a drastic fiscal adjustment, but is constitutionally prohibited from seeing it through. And the politicians continue to protect and advance the primacy of faction over the national interest.

    Would you put your money – or the money of those to whom you owe a fiduciary responsibility – at risk in that country?

  13. @JtO
    Yep, there you again, utterly misunderstanding the difference between an accounting identity and a behavioural relationship. To the extent that anybody Irish has been buying gilts it has been the banks and they are just using borrowed money from the ECB to do it.
    You repeatedly claim that forecasting is impossible and that you are the best forecaster on this Island.
    Economics may or may not be a science but it is much more than just describing published numbers and making up incredible stories about them.

    Why am I bothering to argue with you?

  14. @Paul Hunt.

    It is a shame that other posters can’t post like you. Even though I don’t agree with all you say, your posts are invariably to a very high standard. Well-argued, points well made.

    Despite what you seem to think, I have never been opposed to your campaign for changes in institutions, process and personnel. Returning the compliment, your tenacity is to be commended. I am a nationalist from north of the artificial border, after all. I want to see, not just changes in institutions, process and personnel, but the total abolition of the 26- and 6-county states, and, in the process of replacing them with a 32-county state, I wish to see the total eradication of the useless cultural-cringeing Dublin 4 media/academia/political establishment, which is so dominant on this site. You can’t want a bigger change in institutions, process and personnel than that.

    However, that’s a few years off. In the short-term, there are a few targets that seem to be absent from your list of ‘institutions, process and personnel’ that you want to change. Why not add them to your list? Be assured of my full support if you do. The ones I’m thinking of are organisations paid by taxpayers to produce economic forecasts, but continually get them wrong and damage the reputaion of the country in the process. Example: last year the Dept of Finance, the Central Bank, and ESRI all forecast that the volume of exports from Ireland would fall in 2010. I rubbished these forecasts at the time. You can check through my posts last year where I said so. Now in 2010, it is clear that I was correct to do so. The latest ESRI forecast is for 7.5% growth in exports in 2010. A year ago, they were predicting a fall of 2%. Actually, its quite likely to be a lot higher than 7.5%. Ditto with the Dept of Finace and Central Bank. Is this not an example of the type of incompetence you correctly rail against in other groups, but don’t seem too anxious to highlight among your fellow economists? This was not an isolated case. We had the debacle over the ESRI migration forecasts, that I highlighted on other threads. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe you recently made a submission to the Dail. Next time you do so, could you not bring up the subject of the abysmal quality of economic forecasting in Ireland as one of the things where you want to see ‘changes in institutions, process and personnel’?

    Regarding bond investors looking kindly on us, well, if all your leading economic forecasting organisations forecast that the volume of exports will fall by 2% in a year (2010) when global trade is forecast to grow strongly, then naturally they won’t look kindly. They’ll conclude that our exporters are not competitive and will start speculating that opting out of the euro and devaluing are likely. This is precisely what happened in early 2010. The forecasts proved completely wrong, as I predicted they would, but the damage was done.

    @Paul Hunt

    Would you put your money – or the money of those to whom you owe a fiduciary responsibility – at risk in that country?

    JTO again:

    Funny you should mention that.

    Like most nationalists from the occupied counties, nearly all my money (modest though it is) is invested south of the border. Which is more than can be said for the Dublin 4 establishment.

    As it happens, I’m quids in from doing so. Back in early 2007, my bank manager (in Belfast) suggested that I move my money from south of the border back to the UK. The ‘Eire economy’ (that’s what unionist bank managers in Belfast call it) is going to collapse, he said. Much better to move your money into sterling assets, UK government bonds and so on. I refused. Some people I know in ‘NornIron’ did just that, however. But, look at the outcome. My money in Irish bonds has returned a 5%/6%/7% interest since 2007 and maintained its value. Those, among my fellow-nationalists in Belfast, who took such advice and moved their money back to UK government bonds, or just put it in a Belfast bank, have had a virtually zero return of interest in that time and seen it depreciate by 20% against the euro. Maybe it would be an idea if every poster on this site, who took Morgan Kelly’s and my bank manager’s advice in 2007 to move their money from Ireland to the UK would post on here how their investment is doing compared with mine. Maybe even Morgan Kelly himself?

  15. @JtO: “Maybe it would be an idea if every poster on this site, who took Morgan Kelly’s and my bank manager’s advice in 2007 to move their money from Ireland to the UK would post on here how their investment is doing compared with mine. Maybe even Morgan Kelly himself?”

    That’s it John. Hold all future ‘broadcasts’. OK?

    Brian P

  16. “occupied counties,”

    says it all really. Occupied by whom forsooth? Occupied….vacant more like. Empty and shrill. Occupied…and he says I should go to P.ie….occupied. Ah, its deffo 1984 again.

  17. @JtO

    If, as you say, you are interested in an analysis of the figures maybe this is what you are looking for.

    It is true that net household disposable income was down by 2.3% in 2009. However net household income was down by 8.2%, a rate almost four times greater. The main driver of this was the 8.1% drop in wages earned by households – a drop of €6.4 billion.

    The reason why net household disposable income ‘only’ fell by 2.3% was because of a drop in the amount of taxes paid on household income and wealth (-14.8%) and social contributions (-9.7%) and an increase in social benefits paid to households (+7.5%). These insulated disposable income from the fall in net income and are unlikely to be maintained in the current fiscal environment.

    Without these supports household income is falling rapidly and higher taxes and lower benefits loom large on the horizon. Households are seeing what is coming down the track and those with excess income above necessary expenditure are reacting accordingly by saving.

    While I applaud your efforts to extract a positive message from the CSO figures but it is not one to which I can subscribe. You are right that we do not need a household savings rate of 12.3% and nor do I expect it to continue. However, the savings rate will decline not because of increased expenditure but because of reduced disposable income.

  18. The fall in net household income in 2009 was mainly driven by a fall in employment, of over 8%. The rate of decline in employment has slowed in 2010 and most forecasts see employment bottoming out in 2011. This in turn is why the fall in consumer spending is expected to slow quite a good deal this year – to less than 1% after a c7% drop last year – with some prospect of a very moderate rise (<1%) next year.

  19. Retail sales down a bit n September. Probably due to concerns about the future that badminded people such as myself or Whelan put forward.

  20. yep, retail sales down 0.3% on Sept’09…much better than the 10% decline between Sept’08 and Sep’09…

  21. @Seamus Coffey

    Your website is top-class. I’d never seen it before.

    However, your analysis seems to conflict with what Michael Burke wrote, where he said: “The poorest cannot save as they have no discretionary spending.”, while you seem to be saying that it is those hardest hit by the recession (mainly those who have lost their jobs) who are doing the saving. The bottom line is that the amount of savings in Ireland has shot up, while spending is down. We need more information on who is doing the saving. But, I suspect that Michael Burke is correct to a large extent and that it is the solid middle-class who are saving. What we need to understand is that the overwhelming majority are not affected by the recession. About 87pc of the workforce are in work. Even with 13% unemployment, the proportion of people of working-age who are in work is far higher than anything it was until a few years ago. Of that 87pc, job security is increasing because redundancies are falling, while job vacancies are increasing. In September, redundancies were 30pc lower than in September 2009. In contrast, a survey out today shows job vacancies in September 40pc higher than in September 2009 (link below). In addition, because of low inflation, the real incomes of most of that 87pc at work are fairly stable. Indeed, agricultural incomes are rocketing ahead in 2010. While nowhere near as large a proprtion of the total as it used to be, it is still substantial. What we need is for the 87pc who are in work, whose job security is increasing because redundancies are falling while vacancies are rising, and whose incomes are stable or growing, to start spending again. I suggest that some of our economists devote themselves to finding ways of achieving that. That is, after all, why we pay them such large salaries. They are paid to find cures for problems, not simply go around wailing.

    http://www.independent.ie/business/irish/job-advertisements-jump-by-more-than-a-quarter-2399440.html@Joseph

    @Joseph

    I refer you to my points above. I have the utmost sympathy with you or your friends who are unemployed. But, don’t blame me. Because the sales of the company I work for are way up this year, my salary is up 8pc. And I shall be gutted if my Christmas bonus this year is not double last year’s. As I’m not paralysed by fear of the future like so many and treat the George Lee/David McWilliams/Morgan Kelly school of thought with derision, I’m spending it like mad. Admittedly half of my increased spending is in ‘NornIron’ and the other half is in Donegal, which most Dublin 4 economists think is in ‘NornIron’, so my increased spending may not be benefitting you or your friends that much. But, if everyone acted like me, you and your friends would be back at work in no time.

    @simpleton

    you said you are the best forecaster on this Island.

    JTO again:

    I said no such thing. I wouldn’t rate myself as a forecaster at all. It is not my job. Most of the forecasts I make are made reclined on the settee, back of envelope and pen in one hand, glass of wine in other, while watching the 88th rerun on my DVD palyer of the 2008 All-Ireland Final. I merely claim to have made better forecasts in recent years than the vast majority of those employed as professional forecasters in the Dept of Finance, Central Bank and ESRI. However, as I consider their forecasting record in the past couple of years to be monumentally awful, it is no great boast on my part. How can you defend, how can anyone defend, a situation where all the main forecasting organisations forecasts that the volume of exports will fall in 2010, yet they rise by close to 10pc? Sheer monumental incompetence. Why aren’t they sacked? It would happen in the private sector. If analysts employed by some large company forecast that its sales would fall in a given year, then its share price fell as a result of this forecast, then its bank manager popped round and said: “as you are forecasting your sales to fall this year, I’m going to increase the interest I charge you on your loans as you are obviously a greater risk”, then it turned out that they didn’t fall, but rose by close to 10pc, those analysts would be out the door in no time.

  22. @Brian Lucey

    Occupied….vacant more like. Empty and shrill.

    JTO again:

    You are totally wrong about the northern counties. Get over your grudge about events in Croke Park in 1958, 1960, 1961, 1968, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2008 and 2010. They are very far from vacant or empty. Belfast and Derry (that’s ‘Londonderry’ to you) are very dynamic and expanding cities. The population of the six northern counties is fast approaching 2 million, compared with about 1.5 million when the uprising started in 1968. In fact, a much higher density of population than in the 26 southern counties. Add in Donegal, Monaghan and Cavan, and the population of Ulster is close to 2.2 million, twice Munster, three times Connaught, and just behind Leinster. We should overtake Leinster by the time the artificial border goes later this decade. Which raises the interesting question of whether it might not be a good idea to move the capital of the 32-county republic to Belfast and so liberate the entire island from the dead hand of Dublin 4. BTW, do they still hang the Viceroy’s picture in the Trinity staff common room?

  23. You dont do irony do you JtO? Occupied – obverse is empty, vacant, echoing. As in your ability to look beyond woods to trees. You are a troll….sorry, but you are. And whats worse, you troll from a position where you dont have to take any responsibility or bear any cost of the mess we are in. We not you. All you do is whinge that we should continue to pay for your roads. Get over yerself.

  24. @Brian Lucey

    I don’t take anything you say seriously since you publicly expressed a wish on this site last December for the Irish economy to crash. All your comments must be set against that background. Would anyone take medical advice from a doctor who posted on this site his wish that they should die? Why should anyone take economic advice from an economist who posted on this site his wish that the economy should crash? There is no ‘we’ and ‘you’ in this country. It is all one and indivisible 32 counties. That may not be the traditional Trinity College point of view, but it is the view of the vast majority living on this island. As for not having to pay, I have paid about 50,000 euros in taxes since the mid 90s to the Irish exchequer. Quite enough to be going on with, especially as part of it has gone to be paying your salary.

  25. Thanks for all the enlightening clarifications.

    I am sure that most citizens would rather be hanged than listen to a debate on the CSO: Insitutional Sector Accounts.
    They don’t know what they are missing. Maybe there is no such thing as free lunch, but the fare here on offer here is very tasty. I suppose we can’t help being entertaining.

    @ BL
    JtO, he might be a troll, but if he is, he is a troll with a mission. If he didn’t exist, he would have to be invented.

  26. @Michael Burke
    Ireland’s future will certainly be assured by taxing anyone who’s trying to save and making sure that someone else gets to spend all their money. Not.

  27. Can someone explain how the CSO figures show such big increases in household savings – but Central Bank figures show a drop in Household deposits in Ireland? The bank figures show a drop of 1.9% in deposits from Irish Households in the year ending Sep 2010 .

    http://www.centralbank.ie/data/site/cmbs/13%20-%20September%202010.pdf

    Further investigation into the spreadsheets show nothing like the CSO massive increases in 2009. (3.1% increase in Sep 2009)
    Which figures do we believe ?

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