Early demand for next year's tax is just wrong
THERE have been few enough opportunities to be upbeat in recent years, but a number of factors have come together to provide some basis of hope for the future. One of these is consumer sentiment, which hit a six-year high in September and improved modestly again last month.
Taken with unemployment, which has fallen below 400,000 for the first time in six years, manufacturing, which has increased in pace for the last five months, and the gains made on the Irish stock market, which was the best performing in Europe this year, there are signs that the tide is turning, even if only in a small way.
While the latest consumer-sentiment survey, conducted by KBC Bank Ireland/ESRI, is positive, the level of the index indicates that any recovery is at a very early stage and a majority of consumers are still 'cash-strapped.'