Market Pulse Report Q2 2021

Economic Update

The ESRI estimates economic growth of just over 11% in 2021, with the strong performance of the Irish export sector driving much of this expansion. Domestic demand is also expected to rebound strongly as the economy reopens, with consumption expected to grow by 7.5% in 2021. Investment is expected to grow significantly throughout the latter half of 2021 as economic activity resumes, growing by 5.8% overall. The ESRI expects unemployment to fall to 9% by the end of 2021 and to average 7.1% in 2022. They estimate that the cost of lost output in 2020 and 2021 is approximately €24bn, however, by 2022, the economy should recover to where it would have been, had the pandemic never occurred.

Stability Report

The Central Bank of Ireland has raised concerns that the income of small and medium sized enterprises whose repayments were paused declined twice as severely as that of their peers who were able to continue paying their debts. As these businesses were also already more cash strapped heading into the crisis, the findings raise fears over the viability of thousands of SMEs across the country. We expect insolvencies to increase as State supports are withdrawn.

Corporation Tax

Ireland’s Corporation Tax rate was once again in the news as the G7 suggested creating a floor on the global corporate tax rate of 15%. As of 30th June, 130 out of 139 countries had signed up to the new plan at the OECD, with Ireland one of the remaining holdouts, although the Irish Finance Minister has signalled that he will accept any policy that has consensus support.

Rising Prices

More than 40% of Irish businesses have cited rising prices in the wake of Brexit as a major concern according to a survey by the CSO, while 20% fear they will experience a decline in their business as a result of the UK’s exit from the European Union. Almost two-thirds of respondents in the construction sector expressed concern about rising prices. 47% of respondents in industry reported that transporting goods to and from the UK is their biggest concern, while 39% said they had taken no steps to mitigate this concern. Among those that did, the most common strategies were; pausing / cancelling investment (13%), implementing a pay freeze (13%), increasing digitisation (12%) and reducing their work force (11%).


As of Wednesday 30th June, 4.17million vaccine doses had been administered in Ireland, meaning 63.2% of the adult population had received at least a first dose. This equals 3.2million doses administered in Q2, which is a significant increase from the first quarter figure of 932,234. The government aims to have a vaccine available for everyone who wants one by the end of the summer.

Read more of Q2 2021 in the full report which can be downloaded here.

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