Institutional Sector Accounts: Non-Financial

The CSO have published the Q4 2012 and 2012 (preliminary) non-financial ISAs.  The preliminary annual data are not included in the release (they can be roughly derived from the online quarterly dataset) but the commentary indicates that there were annual rises in the household sector for all of income, consumption and savings.

Gross disposable income displayed an annual rise 2.5% to €86.3 billion, with increases in wages (+1.0% to €68.8 billion) and, in particular, self-employed profits (+11.1% to €19.5 billion) accounting for the rise.  Household expenditure rose 0.5% to €77.9 billion and the household gross savings ratio increased from 10.7% in 2011 to 12.5% in 2012 with gross savings of €11.1 billion.

The measure of the government sector in the accounts recorded a net borrowing requirement of €12.2 billion in 2012.  Gross savings increased in the NFC sector, rising from €14.7 billion in 2011 to €16.4 billion in 2012.

10 replies on “Institutional Sector Accounts: Non-Financial”

As of 2012 Q4 there are 291,000 self-employed people in Irl. Some with employees, others with no employees.

Their profits are 19.5bn, according to this blogpost. I calculate that as 67,000 profits per self-employed person. Is that correct?

That’s profits, not sales revenue?

@ Stephen,

Disposable income might have risen but inflation will have taken a lot of the lift out of it (2012 HICP Inflation = 1.7%). Also, given that, the 0.5% rise in nominal household expenditure here ties in with the -0.9% annual drop in real consumption in the preliminary 2012 figures from the National Accounts.

The rise in self-employed earnings is notable. I too looked at the QNHS and that shows no rise in the numbers self-employed. These are preliminary figures and are subject to revision. The ISAs are done on a residual basis, i.e. they sometimes start with a total, fill in what they know and whatever is left as the residual becomes the final unknown item. I’m not sure if that is a factor here but I would guess that getting a measurement for self-employed earnings is pretty difficult.

The average figure may appear high but there will be plenty from the legal, medical, accounting professions who will be classed as self-employed and serve to increase the average. I wonder what the median might be.

Nothing at all about the income attributable to capital?

The gross savings of the financial and non-financial firms rose by €2.9bn in 2012, to over €24bn.

But investment continues to plunge. In Q4 firms’ GFCF was just €743mn, despite net savings of €5.3bn. This is far below their rate of capital consumption. Firms’ net investment was -€1.3bn.

As a result, the net investment rate of the entire economy has fallen below the level of capital consumption. Literally things will begin to fall apart.

Ireland is a capitalist economy. But we have a situation where its capitalists are not generating any new capital despite rising incomes. Instead they are paying out greater dividends and saving greater amounts.

GUBU indeed.

The self employed?

Given that many of the self employed are banjaxed as evidenced by the plunge in pension coverage as per QNHS data and the reality of a brutal domestic recession, the big firm cartels in the sheltered area must be coining it.

However, the rise of €2bn in profits looks a bit dodgy. Like much else, it could well be related to some tax dodge.


I’m aware the CSO does examine the position with regard to both NFCs and NFCs. The post above doesn’t.

@ michael,

I presume you mean FCs and NFCs.

When looking at investment we cannot take much from the FC figures. If banks have any operating surplus in these accounts they will be saving it to cover the mass of problems they have in their financial balance sheets. Insurance companies, pension providers and other financial intermediaries engage a relatively small amount of GFCF.

I’m still not sure what fixed capital you think the corporate sector should be buying.


“Given that many of the self employed are banjaxed as evidenced by the plunge in pension coverage ”

I met a guy who is a director of a pensions provider in Ireland the other day. He told me that the self-employed have been cutting/stopping their pension contributions for at least a couple of years now and the problem is getting worse.

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