A possible British withdrawal from the European Union after the Brexit referendum has replaced fears of a global economic slowdown as the main danger to Irish economic growth, a market sentiment survey of Irish financial analysts by CFA Society Ireland has revealed.
According to the CFA Ireland poll, more than half the respondents – some 54 per cent – identified Brexit as the main danger to the Irish economy, while 31 per cent identified a global economic slowdown and 15 per cent another euro zone crisis.
This compares with the last CFA market sentiment survey where 57 per cent said that a global economic slowdown was the biggest danger.
Indeed, one in five of those in the CFA Ireland poll said Brexit would have a “very severe” impact on Ireland, while two-thirds said it would have a “moderately severe” impact.
“The results of our survey are quite stark and indicate clearly that a British withdrawal from the EU will have a very negative impact on Ireland. There may be divided opinion on how severe that impact, but it is a source of concern that more than 80 per cent of those surveyed believe that there will be a moderate or severe impact,” CFA Society Ireland president Caitriona MacGuinness said.
There is sharply divided opinion on what are the main dangers to global economic growth, with 39 per cent suggesting a slowdown in developed markets as the main danger, 36 per cent suggested a slowdown in emerging markets, while 32 per cent suggested the unwinding of quantitative easing and rising interest markets. One quarter suggested Brexit and 10 per cent another euro zone crisis.
And sentiment towards the Irish stock market has become more negative in the past six months, the CFA Ireland survey reveals.
Six months ago, one in three said they expected the Iseq Index (currently just below 6500) to close 2016 in a range between 7,000 and 8,000. Now none of those surveyed believe the Iseq will close above 7,000, while more than half believe it will end the year in a range between 6,000 and 6,500 and almost one-third believe the index will end the year below 6,000.