It'll take more than an absence of Remy Martin to dislodge Putin
Every month you'll hear about the number of new cars that are sold. This is usually taken as a bellweather for the health of the economy. Cars are expensive and the more that are shifted in any one month, or indeed year, the healthier the economy. Also because so many people use their car to get to work, an upswing in the demand for cars indicates an upswing in activity across all sorts of areas.
Last year, while the second-hand car market moved ahead, Irish new-car sales dropped 6.6pc in 2013. This was despite a sales surge after the introduction of the new bi-annual '132' registration on July 1. Sales fell to 74,303 from 79,574 in 2012.
Contrast falling new-car sales in Ireland with the situation in the UK, where the end of the recession, the availability of credit and an unemployment rate almost half of ours, has seen new-car sales go through the roof.