Housebuilding stalls, Mount Juliet legal battle, and Web Summit’s ‘ungovernable zaniness’

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

The Government's housing strategy is under renewed pressure in the wake of a report showing housebuilding in Dublin stalled in the second quarter of this year despite a severe shortage of properties to rent or buy. Eoin Burke-Kennedy and Jennifer Bray report that new figures show housing completions in the capital fell by nearly 14 per cent to just 1,628 during the three-month period. This was first fall since 2015.

Residents of the five-star Mount Juliet estate have won a court battle against its owners with a judgment made in their favour requiring the replacement of a putting green modelled on one of the world's most famous golf courses. The legal row comes amid plans by owners Tetrarch Capital to add further residential properties on the estate.

Pre-tax profits at Dublin-based Adapt Pharma more than doubled last year while revenue increased by 126 per cent, largely on the back of the company's overdose rescue drug, Narcan nasal spray that is being used in the battle in the ongoing opioid crisis in the US.

A row has broken out which could lead to the part-demolition of one of the most high-profile offices in Dublin city centre, which is home to the offices of IDA Ireland and several large companies. Jack Horgan-Jones has the details.

The European economy is expected to sustain its seven-year run of growth for the next two years, but then "looks to be heading towards a protracted period of more subdued growth and muted inflation," the European Commission predicts in its autumn economic forecast. Patrick Smyth reports from Brussels.

In this week's Agenda feature, Mark Paul looks back over his time at the Web Summit, asking whether the 'ungovernable zaniness' that sets it apart can keep the event relevant to future tech leaders, while this week's interview is with former NTR boss Jim Barry, who is now chief investment officer at US asset management giant Blackrock and explains why he is "going into 2020 in a defensive posture".

Finally, given the changing attitudes to office romance, Brooke Masters explains why wooing at work brings many perils, as advent of #MeToo changes approach of companies.

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