In this special edition of the Macroeconomic Scoreboard we have assembled some of the indicators that have been repeatedly requested from the CSO over the pre– and post–economic crisis years. These indicators include some of the core Macroeconomic Scoreboard variables, like unemployment and debt, along with others that have been subject to interest like tax receipts, migration and several variables on consumption patterns over the last ten years. They are presented below, in their original form, with links to source publications and data.
The Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure (MIP) was developed by the European Commission. The economic crisis in 2008 highlighted the importance of the early detection and correction of macroeconomic imbalances across EU countries and the euro area. This led the European Commission to develop the MIP to screen for any macroeconomic imbalances that may occur in member states. The MIP uses a scoreboard of 14 headline indicators (and 28 auxiliary indicators). Each of the 14 headline indicators have a threshold, set by the European Commission, beyond which economic imbalances are determined to have occurred.
Figure 1.1 shows the Macroeconomic Scoreboard breaches for Ireland for the period 2007-2017. In 2007 five indicators were shown to be in breach. These breaches included the Current Account Balance, Nominal Unit Labour Costs, Private Sector Credit Flow, Private Sector Debt and Export Market Share. By 2010, ten of the 14 indicators were in breach, including General Government Sector Debt and the Unemployment Rate. The 2017 Macroeconomic Scoreboard for Ireland shows five indicators in breach of their thresholds, down from six breaches in 2016.
|Annual Change in House Price Index|
Source publication: Residential Property Price Index, September 2018
Get the data: StatBank HPA06
Figure 1.2 shows the annual change in the house price index since 2006. In 2006 and 2007 house prices increased by 14.9% and 7.5% respectively. House prices fell each year from 2008 to 2012, with the largest decline of 19.2% seen in 2009. This trend reversed in 2013, with a small increase of 1.2% in the house price index. House prices have seen large year-on-year increases since 2014, with increases of over 7.5% in each year.
|Other Private Sector Debt||Outstanding Mortgage Debt||Total Private Sector Debt|
Source publication: Institutional Sector Accounts Non-Financial and Financial 2017
|Please Note: Figure 1.3 and the corresponding commentary was revised in February 2019 to include domestic securitised mortgage debt serviced by Irish banks in the outstanding mortgage debt figures.|
Figure 1.3 above shows mortgage debt as a component of total private sector debt. In 2003 mortgage debt was 29% of total private sector debt. This share increased up to 2007 with both mortgage debt and private sector debt increasing, but mortgage debt increasing at a higher rate. Mortgage debt continued to increase in 2008, but it has decreased every year since. In 2017, mortgage debt accounted for 14% of total private sector debt, compared to 36% in 2007 before the economic crisis. Since 2003, mortgage debt has increased by €42bn (71%) while total private sector debt has increased by €511bn (248%). A large proportion of Ireland's private sector debt relates to the financing of resident, foreign-owned manufacturing and service companies.
Note: Domestic securitised mortgage debt serviced by Irish banks is included in the figures above. Loans granted by non-resident credit institutions to Irish residents are not included in the outstanding mortgage debt figures above.
|Mortgage Transaction Flow||Private Sector Credit Flow|
Source publication: Institutional Sector Accounts Non-Financial and Financial 2017
Figure 1.4 above shows the flow of private sector credit and mortgage credit during the period 2003-2017. The flow of both total private sector credit and mortgage credit increased every year between 2003 and 2006. From 2007 onwards a downward trend is seen in both series. The net flow of mortgage credit became negative in 2010 and remained so until 2015 indicating repayments by the private sector. Since 2016, it became positive but has remained at a low level.
Figure 1.4 shows the relatively large positive flows of credit in the period 2004-2008, predominantly related to investment in residential and commercial property. The positive value of 28% in 2011 was caused principally by refinancing operations for large multinational groups during this period. Since 2016, large negative credit flows have been seen, mainly as a result of the net repayment of non-financial corporate debt related to the funding of intellectual property.
|Planning Permission Houses (left axis)||Planning Permission Private Flats/Apartments (left axis)||New Dwellings (left axis)||Residential Construction (% GNI*) (right axis)|
The total number of planning permissions for new dwellings peaked in 2004 with 101,653 permissions for construction of both new houses and apartments granted that year. Since then the total number of planning permissions has had a downward trajectory with gradual decreases seen until 2009 with a significant decrease in 2009 and 2010. However, the level of permissions granted gradually started to increase from 2013 onwards.
The trend in the share of residential construction was similar to the trend in planning permissions. At its peak in 2006 it was 15.8% of GNI*. In 2017 residential construction stood at 3.3% of GNI*.
Data for completed new dwellings is only available from 2011 onwards. After falling in 2012 and 2013, the number of new dwellings has increased from 2014 onwards. In 2017 the number of new dwellings completed stood at 14,435, a significant increase from 2011 levels of 6,994 completed dwellings.
|Live Register (left axis)||Unemployment Rate (right axis)|
Figure 1.6 above shows the number of people on the live register on the left axis and the annual unemployment rate on the right axis. The trends in the two series are very closely related. From 2003 to 2007 the unemployment rate remained at an average of 4.5%, while an average of approximately 163,000 people were on the live register. However, in 2008 the unemployment rate increased to 8.1% and 263,734 people on the live register.
Both series peaked in 2011 with the unemployment rate at 15.3% and 444,905 people on the live register. Since then, both the live register and the unemployment rate have experienced a downward trend. In 2017, the unemployment rate was 6.1% while 258,580 people were on the live register.
|Retail Sales Index (% change)|
Source publication: Retail Sales Index, August 2018 (Provisional) July 2018 (Final)
Get the data: StatBank RSA05
Figure 1.7 shows the year on year change in retail sales index. The change in retail sales remained positive until 2007 after which it became negative, indicative of an overall fall in retail sales. This negative trend remained until 2013 although the fall in retail sales reduced each year. From 2014 onwards, the trend became positive, indicating an increase in retail sales.
|Table 1.1 Consumer price index, changes in selected goods, 2001-2016|
|Melon||Fresh chilled shellfish||Gluten free products||Avocado|
|Olive oil||Potatoes (7.5kg)|
|Food||Specialised breads||Sweet potatoes|
|Energy drinks||Hake (fresh)|
|Tinned meat||Tinned sweetcorn||Tinned spaghetti||Potatoes (10kg)|
|Out||Melons||Whiting (fresh fillet)|
|Plaice (fresh fillet)|
|Vodka||Champagne||Stout (50cl take home can)||Champagne (take home bottle)|
|In||Cream liqueur||Draught cider||Craft beer (take home bottle)|
|Brandy||Wine (colours separated)|
|Beverages||Gin & tonic||Stout bottle|
|Lager tray (12 x 30cl)|
Table 1.1 shows some selected goods of interest which were included (in) and dropped (out) as part of the consumer price index (CPI) in the years under consideration. The variety of food and beverages in the CPI are a reflection of the demand for certain goods and changing tastes and preferences.
Avocados were included in the CPI for the first time in 2016. Champagne was included in 2006, removed in 2011 and returned in 2016.
Figure 1.8 shows the imports of sparkling wine between the years 2003 and 2017. After a fall in 2004 to €13.4bn, imports of sparkling wine increased each year until their peak in 2008 of €28.9bn. In 2009, sparkling wine imports decreased significantly to €14.5bn, half of their 2008 value. Sparkling wine imports have fluctuated since 2009, again peaking in 2012 at €22.7bn and decreasing to €12.0bn in 2014. Sparkling wine imports have risen since 2014 and stand at €20.1bn in 2017 but remain €8.7bn lower than 2008 levels. For further information on trade statistics see Ireland's Trade in Goods 2017.
|All Vehicles||New Vehicles||Second-hand Imported Vehicles|
Source publication: Vehicles Licensed for the First Time, May 2018
Get the data: StatBank TEA01
The total number of vehicles licensed for the first time increased every year between 2003 and 2007. In 2009 the number of vehicles licensed fell to almost half of the 2008 level and remaining close to that level until 2013. This reduction in 2009 was mainly due to a decrease in the licensing of new vehicles. However, since 2014 the number of vehicles licensed increased each year to reach 279,858 vehicles in 2017, while remaining lower than the peak level in 2007 of approximately 334,000 newly licensed vehicles.
|Income Tax||Valued Added Tax||Excise Duty||Corporation Tax||Other Tax||Total|
Get the data: Revenue
Total tax receipts increased to €47.2bn in 2007 from €32.1bn in 2003. Tax receipts decreased over the period 2008 to 2010 and have been increasing every year since.
Total tax receipts were at €50.7bn in 2017, an increase of €18.6bn from its 2003 levels and above the previous high of €47.2bn in 2007. The largest share of tax receipts came from income tax and value added tax. Income tax increased by €10.8bn between 2003 and 2017 while value added tax increased by €3.6bn. Therefore, much of the expansion in the total tax receipts came from the expansion in income tax. The size of excise duty remained approximately the same in the period under consideration.
|General Government Debt (% of GDP)||General Government Debt (% of GNI*)|
Source publication: Government Financial Statistics, Annual
Figure 1.11 shows gross general government debt (GG debt) both as a percentage of GDP, and as a percentage of GNI* (modified GNI excluding globalisation effects). A similar trend is seen in both series up to 2015, with movements of greater scale in the GG debt as a percentage of GNI* series. From 2015, the level shift in GDP results in a greater difference between the two series than was previously seen.
GG debt experienced little change between 2003 and 2007, with slight decreases each year in this period. In 2008, government debt almost doubled compared to its 2007 value, and it increased substantially each year thereafter until its peak in 2012 of 119.9% of GDP. While government debt has fallen every year since 2012, the 2017 values for GG Debt as a percentage of GDP and GNI* are over double those seen in 2003.
Source publication: Population and Migration Statistics, April 2018
Get the data: StatBank PEA15
Estimates for net migration show an increase between 2003 and 2007, peaking in 2007 with 151,100 people immigrating to Ireland and only 46,300 people emigrating. Both immigration and emigration increased between 2003 and 2007 but the rate of immigration was higher than the rate of emigration giving rise to an increased net migration trend in that time period. After 2007, net migration though still positive started to decrease and ultimately became negative between 2010 and 2014. Emigration peaked in 2012 with 83,000 people emigrating, compared with 57,300 people immigrating that same year.
However, in 2015 net migrations became positive and have been increasing since. As of 2017 net migrations stood at 19,800 compared to 30,700 in 2003 and a peak of 104,800 in 2007.
|Energy Taxes||Transport taxes||Pollution and Resource Taxes||Total|
Source publication: Environment Taxes 2017
The amount of environment tax closely followed the cycle in the economy. Environment tax in total increased by €1.5bn between 2003 and 2007. After falling in 2008 and 2009, the total tax collected has increased every year with the exception of a small decrease of €200m in 2012. In 2017, environment taxes stood at €5.2bn an increase of €1.4bn on the 2009 value. Energy taxes accounted for over 60% of the environment tax collected in 2017. Transport taxes form the next major component of environment tax. Much of the decrease in 2008 and 2009 came from a fall in transport taxes which decreased by nearly €1bn between 2007 and 2009.