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Subsidies, emigrants and speaking for 13 hours: The week in numbers

How many of Ireland’s homes are in significant mortgage arrears? And how many would-be emigrants would be leaving jobs behind?

Image: Numerals photo via Shutterstock

EVERY WEEK, TheJournal.ie offers a selection of statistics and numerical nuggets to help you digest the week that has just passed.

94,488 – The number of households whose mortgages are in arrears of three months or more. Around half of that number are a year or more behind on their repayments. Michael Noonan says he is ‘disappointed’ that banks have not dealt with personal debts despite being given the money to cope with them.

51 – The number of days for which 45 staff at the Old Darnley Lodge hotel in Athboy, Co Meath staged a sit-in in order to secure their redundancy payments. The group left yesterday having been assured they would receive the payments due to them.

46 per cent – The proportion of Irish people, who are thinking about emigration, who already have full-time work in Ireland. That’s according to a UCC study of people attending Working Abroad expos in Dublin and Cork.

73 per cent – The proportion of would-be emigrants who said they were leaving to gain job experience – suggesting that while not everyone is leaving to find work, many believe the opportunities in Ireland are too limited.

9,671 – The number of new cars registered in February, according to CSO figures. That’s 946 lower than the figures supplied by the society of motor dealers – but either way, it’s 12 per cent lower than the number sold in February 2012.

771 minutes – The length of time for which US senator Rand Paul spoke during his remarkable filibuster in the Senate on Wednesday night. Paul rose to speak at 11:47am – and didn’t finish until 12:38am, nearly 13 hours later. The manoeuvre is known as a ‘filibuster’ – and is a deliberate attempt to speak for so long that a vote on an issue cannot be held. It (sort of) worked – the Senate vote on whether to appoint John Brennan as the director of the CIA was delayed by a day.

€120 – The average amount paid to social welfare recipients who asked for special payments to cover the cost of clothing for religious ceremonies, like Holy Communions, in 2012. That’s less than half of the €245 given to the average applicant in 2011.

€178 – The price of the average hotel in room in Dublin tonight (Saturday), according to hotel price website Trivago. That’s about 70 per cent higher than the €105 you’d pay on an average night in March – but still over €100 less than the €287 you’d have to pay to stack next Saturday, March 16, ahead of St Patrick’s Day.

€27.7 million – The amount raised by the Revenue Commissioners in settlements with tax defaulters in the fourth quarter of 2012. The highest settlement was with Wicklow plant hire contractor Michael Healy, whose original tax bill of €694,317 was settled for €2.026 million including interest and penalties.

€81.3 million - Ireland’s 55 fee-paying schools have €81.3 million more to spend each year than public schools, thanks in part to State subsidies, according to a report this week – which has fuelled new debates about whether the taxpayer should be chipping in for private education.

3,496 - The number of homes who had electricity or gas services disconnected in the third quarter of 2012, according to new regulator figures out this week. That’s a 19 per cent increase on the previous quarter.

€121,350 – The amount spent in legal fees by two arms of the State in court action against each other. NAMA spent €71,350 in legal fees defending an action by the Commissioner for Environmental Information, who ruled that it had to respond to public requests for information about the environment. The commissioner spent €50,000 fighting the case.

39,000 – The number of listeners enjoyed by Newstalk’s Off The Ball show in the last quarter of 2012. That’s by far the most of any 7pm show on a national radio station – but 11,000 down on the numbers from the end of 2011. The show’s five-man team left Newstalk this week after being turned down in a request for more airtime.

Want more? Check out our previous ‘In numbers’ pieces>

About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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