Tax yields show stability

THE LATEST tax figures indicate that the Irish economy is beginning to stabilise. The end of April year-on-year decline is 10.8pc but at the end of March it was 15pc.

Overall €9bn in tax receipts were collected, which was slightly behind target. Income tax has yielded €3.5bn to date this year, which was 2.4pc below target.

VAT revenue at €3.4bn is fractionally ahead of the tax profile set down by the department, while income from excise, at €1.33bn, marginally undershot its target.

The figures released from the Department of Finance reveal that the Government has managed to keep expenditure under control.

However, the Department said significant targets remain in the coming months and tax receipts will have to be monitored closely.

But Fine Gael's finance spokesman, Richard Bruton pointed out that the figures showed that national debt was rising by €40,000 every minute.

Mr Bruton said the fiscal austerity being pursued relentlessly by Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan was not a credible policy.

Total expenditure for the first four months of the year was €14.4bn which was €1.3bn below the same period in 2009.

Current expenditure was reduced from €13.8bn in the first four months of 2009, to €13bn in the same period in 2010. The Department said this is €183m or 1.4pc below profile.