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Profit gloom

A PESSIMISTIC survey has ruled out a rapid recovery of Irish businesses.

More than half of businesses across the island recorded a fall in turnover in the fourth quarter of 2009, while nearly 50pc saw profits fall, according to the research.

InterTradeIreland Quarterly Business Monitor said the profit fall was a result of price cuts over the past six months.

"The results reinforce the view that recovery will be slow and uneven, with firms across the island braced for the long road ahead," said said InterTradeIreland's director Aidan Gough.