Economic plans ‘not credible’, Ryanair’s new airline and Spotify bids for podcast glory

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

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe on budget day last year. Asked whether he was dismayed at the fact the Government was ignoring IFAC’s advice, its chairman said: “The Government are ignoring their own advice and projections.”

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe on budget day last year. Asked whether he was dismayed at the fact the Government was ignoring IFAC’s advice, its chairman said: “The Government are ignoring their own advice and projections.”

 

The Government’s medium-term projections for the public finances are “not credible”, the State’s fiscal watchdog has said in its latest assessment of the economy. The Irish Fiscal Advisory Council (IFAC) said the projections – laid out in the Stability Programme Update 2019 – show exchequer surpluses increasing each year based on expenditure forecasts that were not probable. Asked whether he was dismayed at the fact the Government was ignoring IFAC’s advice, its chairman said: “The Government are ignoring their own advice and projections.”

Ryanair is in advanced talks with the government of Malta to launch a new airline on the island called Malta Air, it is understood. Mark Paul reports that advanced discussions involving Ryanair and Maltese authorities are underway to issue an air operator’s certificate for the new airline, which will operate as a separately-run subsidiary under the Ryanair group.

The directors of Karelian Diamond Resources have come out fighting as they face off against shareholders who own 17 per cent of the exploration company and are seeking to outs several of the board. Chairman Prof Richard Conroy lays out his case to Barry O’Halloran.

Beyond Meat continued to sizzle as investors lapped up shares in the veggie burger maker following a solid debut earnings report last week, cementing the stock’s status as this year’s best-performing initial public offering. The company’s market capitalisation up to about $11.2 billion (€9.9 billion) – putting it above the likes of Macy’s, Xerox, Harley-Davidson and TripAdvisor.

In his weekly analysis of the markets, Proinsias O’Mahony asks if investors are turning their backs on active funds, while Fiona Reddan looks at how landlords minimise their tax bills.

Finally, in her media column Laura Slattery ponders the podcast boom, further stoked by Spotify’s signing of the Obamas.