Belfast Telegraph

Republic's latest economic figures make grim reading

By Ed Carty

The Republic's economy has nosedived again, falling 1.9% towards the end of the summer, official figures have shown.

A report on the value of gross domestic product for July-September, which includes the country's huge multinational sector, showed the first drop since the end of last year. The domestic economy also suffered, with a 2.2% downturn in home-grown business compared with the previous three months.

The alarming Central Statistics Office (CSO) figures were published as Ireland's bailout bosses in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned about the knock-on effect of economy woes overseas.

After reviewing the government's budget and austerity measures to date the agency signed off on a €3.9bn (£3.3bn) tranche of loans this week.

The IMF warned that weakening activity among Ireland's trading partners would slow Irish exports and leave real GDP growth at about 1% next year.

The CSO said there had been a 20% fall in investment compared with the previous quarter, figures which can be heavily influenced by the purchase of valuable aircraft.

Looking at the changes over the year, the CSO said there has been a 15% increase in farming, forestry and fishing while construction is down 20%.