House price woes, sharedholder pressure at Smurfit Kappa and good timing at Ires Reit

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

A single teacher could have purchased a two-bed home in Dublin 4 back in 1995, but today - if they can get the necessary loans - will be looking at an apartment in Tallaght. That's the findings of analysis carried out by The Irish Times which illustrates the growing challenges facing homebuyers in today's market. Fiona Reddan considers the fate of a typical teacher, nurse, and average earner - what house could they buy in 1995, and what can they buy today?

Smurfit Kappa shares spiked at a record high on Monday as investors wagered that International Paper (IP) will make a third takeover bid. Market sources said that holders of almost 20 per cent of Smurfit Kappa's shares have indicated that they are supportive of a UK-based asset manager's calls for the cardboard box maker to engage in talks with IP.

Investors ditched Italian bonds and equitieson Monday as Sergio Mattarella, Italy's president, sought to head off political and market tensions by asking Carlo Cottarelli, a former IMF official, to run a technocratic government.

Ryanair cabin crew are threatening to strike by the end of next month if the company does not meet a series of demands from members, reports said on Monday. Unions representing cabin crew met in Madrid on Monday to discuss possible industrial action against the airline.

In her media column this week, Laura Slattery considers what will happen to Sky News amid the takeover wars of its parent, and reckons the rolling news channel is a mere pawn in an M&A game of 4D chess.

London is to introduce a contactless payment scheme for buskers in what organisers say is a world first. It should prove to be not only useful for the musicians, but also a boon for Revenue, who will garner a definite electronic money trail for the sole traders.

There was much-needed good news for the Belfast employees of Bombardier as the Latvian regional airline airBaltic agreed to buy 30 CSeries aircraft from the firm. Meanwhile Bombardier's Northern Ireland operations could be set to play a central role in the production of two new business jets that the Canadian group launched on Monday and plan to have in service by the end of 2019.

The European Commission wants all users of electric bikes users to get third-party insurance as part of new proposals aimed at strengthening European Union rules on motor insurance to better protect victims of motor vehicle accidents and improve the rights of insurance policyholders.

Ahead of today's agm of Ireland's largest private landlord,Irish Residential Properties REIT (Ires Reit), Cantillon reckons its success is down to one key concept: good timing. It turned up in 2015 at just the right time to buy large quantities of something that a lot of people needed and then began supplying it to them. "You did not need to be Einstein to work out what to do: get the resources, invest in the Irish residential sector and watch the cash roll in."