Saturday, January 15, 2011

15/01/2011: Austerity and structural deficits

In recent days, there have been some questioning responses to a series of posts I did earlier this month on Irish Exchequer results for 2010. In particular, some queried my concerns with the long-term deficits and the dynamics of Irish Exchequer deficit.

Well, here's an EU official confirmation of my analysis: "As displayed in Graph 12, the distance of the deficit – corrected for the business cycle and one-off measures, i.e. structural deficit – from the medium-term budgetary objective (MTO) is particularly large (more than five percentage points of GDP) in twelve Member States." (from Brussels, 12.1.2011 COM(2011): GROWTH SURVEY, ANNEX 2, MACRO-ECONOMIC REPORT)

As the chart below clearly shows - Ireland's structural - recession effects-adjusted - deficits are in the league of their own:
Austerity, folks, or not - we are still living beyond our means when it comes to public expenditure. And when it comes to our austerity metrics (the blue bar), it is clear that much more remains to be done and that the worst Budget is yet to come.
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