Davy Research

Irish economy

Irish employment just shy of 2007 peak

DAVY VIEW

As expected, the Irish labour market had another strong quarter of growth in Q4 2017, with employment rising by over 3% on the year and unemployment falling to 6.4%. Monthly data suggest no let-up in the pace of growth in 2018, with unemployment declining to 6.1% in February. The bigger picture is that employment is now just shy of the 2007 peak at 2.23m; however, with the population much larger than a decade ago and immigration flows accelerating, the labour market recovery is far from complete. Irish property prices were up strongly in January, with annual growth accelerating to 12.5%, but we still expect a moderation in annual growth to a single-digit pace in 2018 as Central Bank rules begin to constrain leverage in the mortgage market.

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