Irish GDP figures to show 0.3pc Q1 bounce
THE Irish economy likely returned to growth in the first quarter of this year, as new data suggested a modest recovery had begun.
The Government will release the GDP figures for the first three months of the year this morning. Analysts expect the economy to have grown 0.3pc in the quarter to the end of March, compared with the zero growth recorded between October and December last year.
The economy more than likely grew 0.6pc in the last year, according to market forecasts.
"The positive signs are that the labour market has improved and that should feed into stabilisation in domestic demand," said Davy Stockbrokers economist David McNamara.
"It's been an export-led recovery but we may be seeing a more balanced picture with potential upside for domestic demand," he added.
The unemployment rate has fallen below 14pc, while a survey for the Department of Finance into lending to small business showed more and more businesses feel the banks are beginning to lend to the sector.