Budget looks for balance

 

Another year, another giveaway Budget. With a record surplus under his belt, Minister for Finance, Mr McCreevy, is expected to deliver an even more generous package of tax cuts and spending than last year.

With an eye on inflation, the market will be looking to see if, as expected, the measures favour the lower paid and families with young children. With the best will in the world, the Minister will be unable to keep everyone happy but he will be most concerned to avoid a damaging row such as that last year on individualisation.

Monday

Results: Acal (H1), APC, Belhaven Brewery (H1), Carclo (H1), Comprehensive (H1), Get Group, Health Clinic (H1), Holidaybreak, Orchestream Holdings (Q3), Synstar.

A.G.M.: Amey (e.g.m.), Chime Communications (e.g.m.), CLS Holdings (e.g.m.), Hercules Property (e.g.m.), Interior Services, Optoplast, Thomas Walker, Tradepoint Financial (e.g.m.).

Meetings: National Innovation Conference on business response to consumer demands and environmental impacts.

Indicators: Irish Exchequer Borrowing Requirment (Nov); British M0 money supply (Nov); US leading indicators (Oct) and new home sale (Oct).

Others: Dublin Institute of Technology school of retail & services management photographic exhibition on "Dublin Business Past & Present".

Tuesday

Results: Carlton Communications, Character Group, Eyretel (H1), Halma Group (H1), Hampson Industries (H1), Kelda Group (H1), Scottish & Newcastle (H1), SCS Upholstery, Shaftesbury, Stagecoach (H1), TGI (H1), Ultraframe, Universal Salvage (H1), Victrex.

A.G.M.: Schroder Ventures.

Meetings: Telecoms regulator Etain Doyle marks second year of liberalisation (Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin).

Indicators: EMU unemployment (Nov), business confidence and purchasing managers' index in services (Nov); Irish earnings in distribution (Q2); British PMI - services (Nov); US factory orders (Oct) and NAPM (Nov); German unemployment (Nov).

Others: Minister for the Environment and Local Government Mr Dempsey presents awards to graduates of IPC environmental internship programme.

Wednesday

Results: Chapelthorpe (H1), De Vere Group, Expro International (H1), First Technology (H1), Frith Rixson, Greene King (H1), Litton (Q1); Mentmore Abbey (H1), Porsche, Sage Group, Samuel Heath (H1), Saville Gordon Estates (H1), Smith (David S) Holdings (H1), Triad Group (H1), Wagon (H1).

A.G.M.: Advance UK Trust.

Meetings: Seminar on "An Irish Solution to a Global Challenge" discusses solutions to current skills shortage in IT (Berkeley Court Hotel, Dublin); Workshop on the financial services industry in 2005 (Alexander Hotel, Dublin).

Indicators: British industrial production (Oct); US productivity (Q3) and housing completions (Oct); German manufacturing orders (Oct).

Others: Minister for Finance Mr McCreevy delivers 2001 Budget.

Thursday

Results: AIT Holdings (H1), Bass, BG Group (Q3), Dewhurst, Dyson Group (H1), E.On (Q3), Findel (H1), Glotel (H1), Grainger Trust, Innogy Holdings (H1), International Power (H1), Pura (H1), Securicor, United Drug, Yeoman Group.

A.G.M.: Greencore (e.g.m.), McBride, Tuskar Resources.

Meetings: EU Summit (Nice) discusses reform of EU voting and enlargement.

Indicators: EMU producer prices (Oct); German industrial production (Oct).

Friday

Results: Potential Finance Group.

A.G.M.: Clipper Ventures, Just Group (e.g.m.), Spirent (e.g.m.), Wolsley.

Meetings: Irish agricultural income (2000) and car sales (Sep); US employment (Nov).