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Financial Sector

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Statistics on the Financial sector are presented in this chapter. The statistics were not collected via the structural business surveys mentioned throughout this publication, but were collected and analysed by the CSO Balance of Payments Division who engage directly with the Financial sector and its regulators on the provision of these statistics. 

The Financial and Insurances Activities sector, NACE K, has traditionally used different terms to describe variables like production value, gross value added and operating surplus. As part of a broad legislative proposal, agreed EU definitions for the Financial and Insurance sectors are currently being developed and should be in use in the coming years. The objective behind producing these Financial sector statistics is to complete the coverage of the business economy in Ireland and to allow meaningful comparisons with other business sectors such as Industry and Services. 

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The Financial sector is described by NACE Section K. It includes:

K64 – Financial Service Activities except Insurance and Pension Funding.

K65 – Insurance, Reinsurance and Pension Funding.

K66 – Activities Auxiliary to Financial Services and Insurance Activities.

K64 is dominated by credit institutions which in Ireland are banks and credit unions. However, it also includes activities of holding companies, obtaining and redistributing funds other than for the purpose of insurance, pension funding or compulsory social security among other financial services activities.

K65 includes life insurance companies, non-life insurance companies and reinsurance companies as well as pension funds. This group includes underwriting annuities, insurance policies and investing premiums to increase the portfolio of financial assets.

K66 is the most diverse category and includes all financial auxiliaries including brokerage firms, insurance agents and fund management activities. These services are closely related to financial service activities but are not themselves providing financial services. 

The business operations data presented for the Financial sector in this report covers banks, life insurance, non-life insurance and reinsurance. The detailed calculations of the main indicators for these enterprises are presented here. The calculations are based on an accounting framework where the income and expenses for the reference year 2016 are analysed in detail. See Tables 8.1 and 8.2.

Interest payable
linked to securities
Interest payable
linked to loans and deposits
Interest receivable
from securities
Interest receivable
from loans and deposits
  • Interest received and interest paid by banks continued to decrease over the period 2015 to 2017 following the ECB rate reductions.  On average Interest receivable decreased 9.2% (-13.3% from 2015-16 and -5.1% from 2016-17) and Interest payable and similar charges decreased by 25.1% (-25.7% from 2015-16 and -24.4% from 2016-17)
  • Both net interest income from securities (-41.1%) and net interest received from loans and deposits (-9.6%) decreased over the period 2015 to 2017
  • All income decreased by 10.9% between 2015 and 2016 and decreased by 2.9% between 2016 and 2017
Profit linked to loans and depositsProfit linked to securitiesOther IncomeValue of Production
  • There were increases in Profit linked to loans and deposits (15.3%), Production Value (6.1%) and Other Income (2.2%) from 2016 to 2017

Gross premiums earnedGross claims incurred
  • Gross Premiums earned by insurance companies increased by 9.5% between 2016 and 2017, while Gross Claims incurred rose by 5.8% in the same period
  • Fees Receivable increased by 8.9% in 2016 and by 24.1% in 2017
  • Investment Income on Insurance Reserves (Technical a/c) decreased by 14.7% between 2015 and 2017
  • Production for all Insurance companies amounted to over €14.8bn in 2017, an increase of 2.3% on the previous year
  • Gross Operating Surplus for Insurance companies was over €2.6bn in 2017, an increase of €130m or 5.2% on 2016 levels
8.1 Production account and generation of income for all banks, 2015 - 2017

8.2 Production account and generation of income for all insurance companies, 2015 - 2017

8.3 Summary of main indicators for banks and insurance, 2017

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