IBEC, group that represents Irish business, today said that the latest Quarterly National Accounts data from the CSO show that the Irish economy continues to perform reasonably well in what remain difficult external circumstances.
Commenting on the data, IBEC Chief Economist Fergal O'Brien said: "Ireland is faring much better than most eurozone countries at the moment. GDP was fairly flat in the third quarter, but remains on track to grow by about 1% this year. Exports have slowed since the start of the year because of difficult trading conditions in Europe, but domestic demand has stabilised. The GNP numbers have been very strong over the past couple of quarters, but this is only partly due to an increase in domestic demand. Other factors, such as international profit flows into the country, have pushed GNP higher.
"There are positive signs of stabilisation in the domestic economy. Retail sales have improved in recent months and this is reflected in the 0.5% growth in consumer spending in the third quarter. Investment in equipment and machinery has also been strong, but is heavily influenced by the volatile aeroplane purchases sector. If external demand recovers in line with the global economy, a combination of a growing export and domestic economy should result in more impressive growth in years to come."