Dublin city centre in lockdown: “Each time there is a lockdown, fewer jobs will return after the reopening and fewer businesses will make it back. The floor level of unemployment will rise.” Photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

Cliff Taylor: We are starting from a position of what can stay open rather than what must close

The concern now is that as more businesses run into financial trouble, even with Government supports, many will not make it through.  Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Smart Money: How do we calculate the likely economic cost of ongoing lockdowns?

The Irish economy is likely to contract by around 1.3%  in the fourth quarter, according to Davy stockbrokers economist Conall Mac Coille

Call for Government to show how successive waves of opening and closing the economy can be avoided

A woman passes a mural in Dublin city centre as the  Government prepares  to sign off on plans to introduce further country-wide restrictions. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

If our economic strategy is open and close and wait for a vaccine, then the dangers are obvious

The closure of a dozen Pamela Scott stores is just the latest example of financial stress in the retail sector. Photograph: Crispin Rodwell

Four to six weeks of Level 4 or 5 restrictions could quickly add €1 billion or more to deficit

A woman walks past a cafe on Main Street, Cavan, on Thursday, as counties Donegal, Cavan and Monaghan  move to Level 4 of the Government’s Living with Covid-19 plan. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

State has leeway, but the cost of another Covid-19 lockdown would be significant

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath and Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe during a photocall at Government Buildings prior to the announcement of Budget 2021.  Photograph:   Julien Behal

The amounts of cash being put into businesses forced to close or severely restrict activities due to Covid is unprecedented

Ireland’s national debt at the end of next year is expected to be almost €240 billion. Image: iStock

Smart Money: It is different to the last crisis – but a huge debate lies ahead on public finances

Budget 2021: Government ‘may be trying to limit’ further flow of IP assets into Ireland

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe and Minister for Public Expenditure  Michael McGrath leaned towards doing more, rather than doing less. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Budget 2021: Economic outlook on a knife edge due to pandemic uncertainties

The budget will announce a shake-up of the tax scheme for cars designed to discourage the use of the most polluting vehicles. SUVs now account for 45% of new car sales. Photograph: Getty Images

Major shake-up in VRT and rise of up to €50 in motor tax for cars with high emissions

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe has said repeatedly that he believes an agreement at OECD level is still the best option for Ireland. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

International corporate tax regime could cost State up to €2bn in lost revenue annually

The Construction Industry Federation says it has worked to promote new safety guidelines through new operating procedures. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Shutting industry would hit delivery of housing and infrastructure, lobby group claims

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe and Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath: Budget 2021 will be all about Covid-19 and key areas such as housing and the green agenda. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Damage limitation, jobs, cohesion and hope are backdrops to Ministers’ tasks

Paschal Donohoe, the Minister for Finance. Photograph: Alan Betson

Deficit for 2020 expected to be €21bn, considerably less than had been feared

One of the key messages of Budget 2021 will be: go out and spend your cash, it is your national duty. Photograph: iStock

Talk of more restrictions makes Budget 2021 a much more difficult job

Paschal Donohoe confirmed that a major recovery fund would be put in place to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. Photograph: Julien Behal/PA Wire

Figures drawn up on basis of no further increase in public health restrictions

Paschal Donohoe, the Minister for Finance. Photograph: Alan Betson

Updated forecasts suggest a figure of €21–€22 billion – less than 7 per cent of GDP

People queueing outside a Smyths toy store in Dublin earlier this week, as debate raged over a possible move to Level 5 restrictions. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Smart Money: We need to decide which businesses need to close at Levels 4 and 5

Minister for Public Spending Michael McGrath.

Figure is €16bn higher than revised estimates published earlier this year

Retail Ireland said a shutdown would have had “a devastating impact on thousands of businesses and jobs”. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

Cliff Taylor: Could the Government say no a second time to NPHET in a few weeks’ time?

Henry Street: In the months ahead,  it will become clear  a lot of jobs will not be coming back and a lot of businesses will close. Early 2021 could be tricky. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Export sector remains strong but budget faces key challenge of building confidence across economy

Paschal Donohoe: Slowly the pieces for Budget 2021 are starting to fall into place. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Tax revenues beat expectations but forecasts see lower growth and higher unemployment

Is this the future of office work?

Smart Money: Many staff prefer the option of remote working but can employers facilitate it?

Delays were also identified in the time it took to issue determinations after hearings.

Cases at appeals commission at end 2019 on average had been in that process for at least two years

The forecasts are drawn up on the basis of no vaccine being available next year. File photograph: The Irish Times

New official forecasts show GDP hit less than expected, but unemployment crisis looms

Publicly available returns show that Micahel D’Arcy was lobbied directly by the IAIM in 2017.

Tánaiste says ex-minister should have contacted Sipo before taking private sector role

Publicly available returns show that Micahel D’Arcy was lobbied directly by the IAIM in 2017.

Incoming chief of association of investment managers says he is in compliance with rules

Michael D’Arcy was elected to the Seanad from the agricultural panel in March and his vacancy will be filled by a byelection. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Michael D’Arcy to resign Seanad seat for Irish Association of Investment Management post

Output in modern multinational-dominated sectors continues to rise but in more traditional sectors is down sharply. Image: Getty Images

Uncertainty has gripped the economy. Here’s where we’re at in this strangest of recessions

Cliff Taylor: We appear to be on some kind of strange economic plateau. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

The more restrictions and the longer they last, the bigger the economic hit

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe and Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath. Photograph: Julien Behal

Government must move now to help those whose jobs have been upended by pandemic

Total gross wealth, before subtracting debt, is €667.4 billion – of which around 60 per cent is accounted for by principal private residences. Photograph: iStock

Smart Money: New Central Bank analysis of State’s wealth has key lessons

Restrictions in Dublin, which represents not far off half the economy’s output, will have a wider economic impact.  Photograph: Getty Images

Cliff Taylor: Ecosystem of life in the city centre set to take another big blow

A large red percentage sign sits on a roller coaster symbolising the ups and downs of interest rate directions.

Smart Money: A new era of super-low mortage rates – and pressure on banks to charge for your savings

Brexit developments may continue the political momentum towards a Border poll, but coronavirus means less cash and resources to pay the bills.

‘Brexit has changed the debate and put the whole issue in the melting pot,’ says expert

 Stephen Donnelly: despite the furore over new record-keeping rules for pubs and restaurants, the  Minister for Health says wet pubs must have a chance to reopen as soon as possible. Photograph: Alan Betson

In some cases the Government is going to have to ‘play God’ and decide which businesses survive

Those in lower-paid areas of employment are suffering most from job losses and poorer prospects, while many better paid employees continue, supported in many cases by their ability to work from home. Photograph: iStock

Smart Money: Payments by higher earners support exchequer for now – but tax bills could rise

European Commission president  Ursula von der Leyen addresses a press conference following the resignation of  EU trade commissioner Phil Hogan, in Brussels. Photograph: François Walschaerts/EPA

Influence of Irish commissioner in looking after specific national interests is limited

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly: he said the pandemic is close to having us shut down the country again.  Photograph: Tom Honan

Businesses need to know what the overall strategy is. We can’t be waiting to find out every Friday

Politically, one of the striking figures in the CSO survey is that just 8 per cent of those laid off in quarter two and who are now on the PUP do not expect to return to their previous employment. Photograph: iStock

Smart Money: The situation is unprecedented and much remains unclear

Suffering retail: boarded-up shop on a deserted  Grafton Street in March. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Government urgently needs to persuade furious citizens it can operate competently

Will office ever go back to the pre-Covid normal?

Smart Money: Will working from home remain the norm?

Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Maybe Heather Humphreys was right and some jobs will never return

Pigs at a farm in Yorkshire. The EU will want to ensure that British animals and food products entering the Republic via the North are subject to appropriate customs checks and meet safety standards. Photograph: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Smart Money: Brexit is back – here are the five things you need to know

People on a busy Henry Street in Dublin’s city centre in mid-July. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Government has to give clear advice on returning to work

What should we be doing to prepare, in case  a viable vaccine presents itself sooner rather than later? Image: iStock

Smart Money: A viable vaccine could change everything for the global and domestic economies


Jobs will be saved – but the coming autumn will be marked by an economic reckoning

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe: his department has said the State has so far provided €20bn in direct supports to counter the impact of Covid-19 on the economy. Photograph: Julien Behal

This amounted to around 12% of economic output, according to an analysis published by the Department of Finance

Rossnowlagh Strand in Co  Donegal: staycation scheme will be popular but may give people a refund on money they would have spent anyway.     Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Pump priming and jobs targeted but fear of second wave makes confidence scarce

When  the impact of prices is considered, Irish households no longer belong to the EU rich club.

Smart Money: Headline data shows we are better off than our neighbours – but it is wrong

Taoiseach Micheál Martin: The centrepiece of the Government stimulus plan will be  new employment supports based on a German scheme. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Plan will include new employment scheme to support wages of those temporarily put on short-time working

Taoiseach  Micheál Martin in Brussels at the end of the EU summit.

Cash gains limited for State but fallout from a summit collapse could have been costly

The context for the July stimulus is politically tricky. Above, Taoiseach Micheál Martin. Photograph: Francisco Seco/AFP via Getty

Supporting businesses and jobs is the right path for now but unpopular decisions await

People waiting for a bus in Dublin city centre. Photograph Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

Smart Money : Vital decisions on wage subsidy, grants and VAT in the balance

The Apple logo on display at a company store in Brussels. The EU general court ruling is a big blow for the European Commission. Photograph: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP

Cliff Taylor: Cupertino, not Cork, clearly called the shots in tech giant’s Irish business

Competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager. The European Commission looked at the way Apple set up its business in Europe and specifically at how profits earned all over Europe were allocated to the ‘head offices’ of two companies. Photograph: Kenzo Tribouillard/EPA

Cliff Taylor: Key question is will the State contest the decision again?

Apple chief executive Tim Cook with former taoiseach Enda Kenny the company’s campus in Cork in 2014.

European court decision due this week will put corporate tax policy back under spotlight

The recession means all the drive now is to keep interest rates low. But how long can this last?

Smart Money: The path of borrowing costs is vital for households – and for the State

Younger, less-educated people in lower-paid jobs are exposed, while many older, better-paid folk are protected. File photograph: Provision

The looming two-tier recession will disproportionately affect these two groups

Redundancies will be the biggest cause of income loss in the months ahead, but a loss in pay, bonuses, overtime and working hours will also hit incomes in many areas of the private sector. Photograph: iStock

Smart Money: Pay was on the rise before the pandemic hit

 Debenhams staff protesting outside the Henry Street branch recently. Retail has been one of the sectors worst-hit by the Covid-19 lockdown. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Group advises public be given vouchers to spend in worst-hit sectors of economy

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe at the announcement of the new Cabinet at Convention Centre Dublin. Photograph: Maxwells

Deciding where to direct cash – and where not to – in response to Covid-19 crisis will be controversial

 Micheál Martin: presumably both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael   realise that if they are caught again having to impose actual austerity, then the political consequences would be enormous. Photograph: Alan Betson

New revenue streams will inevitably be needed to pay for programme for government

The programme for government points towards a bigger role for the State in the housing market. Photograph:    Luke MacGregor/Bloomberg

Level of uncertainty new government faces in economic arena is unprecedented

As presumed incoming taoiseach, Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin will preside over many changes to tax, welfare and spending that will affect our family finances. Photograph: PA Wire

Smart Money: Taxes, pensions and housing all included in Programme for Government

PRSI increases could be on the cards. File photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The deal says increasing the charge will be considered to help pay for higher benefits

Tánaiste Simon Coveney and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at Government Buildings in Dublin on Monday. Photograph: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland/PA Wire

Analysis: Programme for government sets a new direction, but is light on the details

UK confirms it will not seek extension to transition period at the end of the year

There are a group of firms which will only be viable in a return to something like the “old” normal – many pubs, for example. We don’t know whether the “new” normal is  temporary or  semi-permanent. Photograph: David Sleator

As the economy reopens in hope and fear, many sectors need support to survive

‘Silicon Dock’, home of Google in Dublin.

Smart Money: Fears about Ireland’s over-reliance on corporation tax will be put to one side. Put simply, we need the money

General mood is bleak and 25 per cent of firms expect revenue to be down at least 70 per cent over the next three months.

Chambers Ireland finds small businesses worst hit by lockdown and invoice arrears

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe: For investors issues such as Brexit-risk could be a factor as they look at the Republic.

Cliff Taylor: NTMA can pick and choose when to seek more money with plenty of cash in hand

Duke Street in Dublin as the country prepares to lift more restrictions due to Covid-19. Ireland’s flaw  in the past is the government has spent when we had money and been forced to cut back in recession.  Photograph: Laura Hutton

Fiscal stimulus can minimise Covid-19 austerity but cheap money will one day cease

An extremely quiet Dublin city centre.

Data are a tale of two economies: the domestic takes a huge hit while exports grow

The European Commission has come up with a plan totalling €750 billion – how much of this will the Republic get? Photograph: iStock

Smart Money: Inflated GDP data could cost Ireland under European Commission proposals

Positives from the pandemic: Máire Gilmartin of St Vincent's University Hospital in PPE; a climate protest near the Dáil; and traffic on the M50 in west Dublin. Photographs: Alan Betson

The crisis poses huge threats but also shows us ways forward in health, housing, work and lifestyle

‘The predominantly younger workforces in areas such as hotels, pubs, bars, restaurants, leisure and tourism are at most risk.’ Photograph: Frank Miller

Sectors where young people work are the ones that will struggle to bounce back

Mariana Mazzucato: The pandemic is a wake-up call

Top economist Mariana Mazzucato on ‘doing economics differently’ in a post-Covid-19 world

The non-food retail sector is among those is real trouble as a result of Covid. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Smart Money: Major reports from IFAC and the ESRI point to what might come next

Really big decisions await on whether, if the infection figures are okay, Ireland should move more quickly in reopening. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Rebooting the economy is a complex task best-placed in hands of new government

Private investors were brought into Nama via a special purpose vehicle which held a majority stake in an investment holding vehicle which was part of the agency structure. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Final size of agency’s surplus could be hit by Covid-19 crisis

The traditional Keynesian approach is that the government needs to step in to fill a significant part of the gap caused by a collapsing economy – such as the situation caused by Covid-19. Image: iStock

Smart Money: Controversy rages over how far Ireland can go into deficit to protect the economy

The UK government published the tariff levels which will apply from next January if a trade deal is not done with the EU. Photograph: EPA

New tariff schedule confirms particular problems for the Irish beef sector

The exit from the Covid-19 crisis will give us some opportunities to start anew, but it also presents us with the age-old challenge that getting things to change in a time when there is less cash around is just a lot more difficult

Delivering the green agenda – always costly – looks even harder in this ravaged economy

A healthcare worker takes a nasal swab sample. A cost of, say €1.7 billion per annum for PPE and testing is equivalent to the annual budget of the Department of Children or Department of Agriculture and Food. Photograph: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty

Huge costs of addressing Covid-19 and rising unemployment will present real political problems

It is genuinely difficult for employers to decide under which phase of the Government’s plan they fit, and how they might need to prepare their workplaces. Photograph: iStock

Smart Money: A significant number may not return to the office until late this year or even 2021

There is a big wave of temporary lay-offs going to turn into longer-term redundancies. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Cliff Taylor: In the domestic economy, many temporary lay-offs will soon become permanent

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe said the State would have to “lay out the path in how we’ll deal with the issue in a fair and affordable way” over the next “number of weeks”.

Ministers say two existing Covid-19 crisis schemes cannot continue in current form

Bewley’s on Grafton Street in Dublin: the latest high-profile services business to fail. Photograph:  Dara Mac Dónaill

Smart Money: the pandemic unemployment payment will be extended, but not forever

Paschal Donohoe: The Government faces difficult decisions on both the wage subsidy and pandemic unemployment payments.

Minister for Finance says schemes will continue, but in an amended form

The shutdown has created a cash crisis for many firms and if not addressed it will turn into a solvency crisis and threaten their future. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

The need for new legislation could delay some measures, including credit guarantees

Merrion Square in Dublin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

When will we feel safe to return to our economic and social lives?

Gardaí are planning wide-ranging operation this bank holiday weekend to ensure public adhere to travel restrictions

Government to unveil plan for lifting restrictions as pressure mounts to ease cocooning advice for over 70s

How many businesses will not be able to open the shutters at all and at what level will others operate?

Smart Money: Burden of Covid-19 economic crisis will not be shared equally

One third of businesses surveyed by Chambers Ireland have shut after  Covid-19 restrictions were put in place. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

One-third of businesses shut completely and SMEs facing cash shortages, survey shows

A Garda checkpoint in operation on the N7: The ESRI’s Dr Lunn says that for the vast bulk of people, the regulations are still guiding their daily activities.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Research shows majority of people are nervous about a second surge of Covid-19

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