WE may be up to our eyes in debt -- but it appears Irish people are some of the wealthiest people alive.
A report published by National Irish Bank (NIB) last week found that more luxury private jets were bought in Ireland in recent years than any other European country. There are apparently more Mercedes cars per head in Ireland than in Germany. And household wealth has passed the €1 trillion mark for the first time, according to NIB.
If one in three of us own our own homes, as property consultants CB Richard Ellis suggests, there must be many living in Ireland who are oblivious to -- and puzzled by -- talk of an economic downturn. And bully for them.
The voices often overlooked during the lengthy discussions about Ireland's economic fortunes are those of the less well-off. Although standards of living have undoubtedly improved in Ireland over the last few decades, almost 300,000 people struggle to make ends meet each day, according to the Combat Poverty Agency. Many of these still live in conditions that were barely acceptable 25 years ago.
Perhaps we might think about this the next time we grumble about the scant cinnamon toppings on our frothy cappuccinos.