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#Economic Commentary

# economic-commentary - Wednesday 28 November, 2018

Government 'repeating past mistakes' and leaving Irish finances exposed, budget watchdog warns

The Irish Fiscal Advisory Council has warned that an economic slowdown is inevitable in coming years.

# economic-commentary - Wednesday 21 July, 2010

A POSTER ON THE NEW YORK TIMES website bearing the same name and location as former Finance Minister Ray MacSharry has come to the defence of Irish economic policy.

The comment was posted in reply to Paul Krugman’s diatribe against the economic policy and austerity measures recommended by the ESRI on Wednesday.

The Poster who goes by the name Ray MacSharry wrote: “There is little this country can do other then to trim spending, try and engineer an economy wide deflationary effect on wages and costs…and hope for a spill over of international stimulus to stimulate the recovery.”

MacSharry explained his comments, saying: “Paul, With no ability to control currency, with a rising debt to gdp ratio..with a very high unit labour cost, and with the crystalisation of proportionally massive banking losses and a crashed property market, the policy levers open to Ireland are few and far between.

“There is nothing the Irish government could spend money on that will boost the economy, so far the hammer has come down mostly on the spending side..hopefully the tax side will be spared and private economic activity might grow.”

Krugman, a Nobel Prize winner and columnist with the New York Times said the ESRI report was plucked “out of the thin air” and was designed to appeal to the “confidence fairy”.

MacSharry’s comments are an endorsement of the government’s plan to cut €3bn in spending from the 2011 budget.

The Journal was unable to contact the the former Finance minister at the time of writing. Ray MacSharry served as Tánaiste and finance minister in the 1980s. He also served as an EU Commissioner.