Economic Overview June 2016

We have Restored a Strong Economy


  • 155,000 jobs have been created since the Action Plan for Jobs in 2012.
  • Unemployment rate is down to 7.8% from a peak of 15.1% in 2011.


  • The economy is now bigger than the size it was before the crash.
  • We are the fastest growing economy in Europe with 7.8% GDP growth in 2015, after 5.2% growth in 2014.
  • Domestic demand has returned to growth in 2014 and 2015.

To Support a Fair Society

A Regional Recovery

  • Unemployment has decreased in all 8 regions since Action Plan for Jobs.
  • We published 8 Regional Jobs Plans as part of a €250m strategy.
  • Disposable income (after tax) is increasing in every county (2014 data).

A Fair Recovery

  • Exempted 450,000 low income workers from the USC.
  • USC & Income tax cuts targeted at low and middle income workers (benefits are capped at €70,000 salary).
  • Increased the minimum wage by 20%, from €7.65 to €9.15.
  • Core weekly social welfare rates were protected during consolidation.

Public Services

  • We commit to an extra €6.75bn current spending on public services, using the proceeds of a strong economy.
  • We commit to €4bn extra capital spend, above the €42bn capital plan.
  • Employment in the health sector increased by over 8,000 in the last 2 years; with over 80% of this increase in front line activities.
  • Over 2,260 new teachers and 600 new Garda recruits in Budget 2016.

Mortgage Arrears

  • The number of primary home mortgages in arrears has decreased by nearly 57,000 mortgages or 40% since the peak in June 2013.
    Long term arrears (over 2 years) have decreased for the last 3 quarters.
  • This is after the Personal Insolvency Bill in Dec 2012, and the Central Bank’s mortgage arrears targets for the main banks in March 2013.
  • The no. of mortgages in negative equity has decreased from 315,000 in 2012 to approx. 100,000 now.