Majority of Irish businesses fear second lockdown

Data shows just over half of companies had lower turnover in four weeks to end of July

About two-thirds of Irish businesses are concerned about another lockdown, according to new figures compiled by the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

The data shows some 54.1 per cent of businesses surveyed had lower than normal turnover for the four weeks ending July 26th. Almost 40 per cent were expecting revenue to return to normal over the following month.

As of that date, 96.1 per cent of companies that responded were still trading in some capacity, with 3 per cent having temporarily ceased operations.

One-fifth of companies indicated that business costs had exceeded turnover since the beginning of lockdown.


The findings are included in a fortnightly survey recently introduced by the CSO to provide an up-to-date snapshot of how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting Irish businesses.

The top two concerns for businesses operating during the crisis are an increase of cases leading to another lockdown and reduced demand due to lower consumer confidence.

According to the latest survey, 59.2 per cent of office-based staff were working remotely during the four weeks under review. This compares with just 13.7 per cent of employees who don’t work for office-based enterprises.

At the end of July, an average of 18.2 per cent of staff had returned from temporary leave to their normal place of work, while 8.5 per cent returned from remote working.

Another finding from the fortnightly survey is that more than half of companies surveyed have made personal protective equipment (PPE) mandatory in the workplace. Some 45.3 per cent have provided protective screening for staff.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist