Ireland Economic Forecast

Ireland Economic Outlook

January 29, 2019

While still strong, the highly-open Irish economy is likely experiencing a slowdown ahead of the UK’s departure from the Eurozone, with the prospect of a no-deal Brexit weighing on business investment. This was visible in the third quarter, which saw a marked downturn in growth as uncertainty surrounding Brexit has led to businesses delaying investment decisions. While exports surged overall in October and November, weakness in the sterling relative to the euro has made Irish exports less competitive, thus having an adverse impact on sales to the UK. Available data for the fourth quarter corroborates this downward trend: Industrial production contracted, on average, in the first two months of Q4; the manufacturing and services PMIs lost ground in the quarter; and consumer confidence remained in pessimistic territory throughout the period, as households’ concerns over Brexit intensified.

Ireland Economic Growth

The economy is set to lose traction in 2019, as export growth weakens on a wider slowdown in the global economy. Moreover, private consumption is expected to expand at a slower pace as households’ purchasing power is curbed by higher inflation, while government spending will also likely slow on tighter fiscal consolidation measures. That said, domestic demand should rebound in tandem with fixed investment swinging back into positive territory. Primary risks to the outlook continue to stem from uncertainties surrounding Brexit, particularly the prospect of a hard-Brexit. Met the why particular panelists expect GDP to grow 3.8% in 2019, which is unchanged from last month's forecast, and 3.1% in 2020.

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Ireland Facts

Bond Yield0.460.27 %Jan 30
Exchange Rate1.140.65 %Jan 30
Stock Market5,860-0.39 %Jan 30

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