Steep drop in living standards, house price growth to fall and Apple leads Top 1000

Business Today: the best news, analysis and comment from The Irish Times business desk

The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) says households in the Republic are facing the biggest drop in living standards since the 2008 financial crisis as earnings from work fail to keep pace with soaring inflation. It is also predicting a slowdown in house price growth, or perhaps even a drop if supports in the market drop away. Eoin Burke-Kennedy has more on both issues, while Ian Curran reports on the latest consumer sentiment data.

The Central Bank is set today to impose a record fine on AIB and its EBS subsidiary for their roles in the State’s tracker mortgage scandal, writes Joe Brennan. The bank has set aside €70 million on its balance sheet to cover its “best estimate” of an expected fine

Apple was once again the largest company in Ireland last year, with revenue of just under €180 billion and profits of €57.8 billion, according to the latest Top 1000 ranking by The Irish Times, reports Barry McCall. Check out the latest rankings here.

In her Net Results column, Karlin Lillington marks the quiet end of Internet Explorer, “another end-of-an-era moment” and one that she argues should not be forgotten.

Cantillon today muses on the role of motor insurance customers in subsidising other product lines. The columnist also has some thoughts the growing phenomenon of greenwashing, where companies are more concerned with making themselves look environmentally friendly than doing much to make it true.

And in the same environmental ballpark, Ciara O’Brien surveys the Irish cleantech industry, a sector with the aim of helping to improve their sustainability. It’s not just about ticking boxes, she notes.

In our Innovation section, Chris Horn wonders about automation in the aviation industry, asking if commercial aircraft could actually become self-flying?

Ciara indulges her creative side in her weekly tech review, testing out the latest offering from Cricut, the producer of smart crafting machines that connect to your phone, tablet or laptop. The Cricut EasyPress 3 smooths the way for crafting beginners, she writes.

And finally, Olive Keogh speaks to David McIntyre, who was inspired to found Cubbie by his youngest daughter, Ava, who is on the autism spectrum. Cubbie is a self-contained booth that acts as a snug and safe space where a child with additional sensory needs can go to be calm or be stimulated, depending on what’s right for them.

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