Following a week where we had to endure rugby failures, the loss Billie Walsh and the news of only 800 tickets for Ireland fans in Bosnia, we finally have something to get excited about,
The finance bill has been published!

Here are some of the key points :
• The current levels of specified income (guaranteed income for life) of €12,700 p.a. or investment of €63,500 in an AMRF/purchase of an annuity (or a combination of both), before a person can invest in an ARF or take taxable cash remain unchanged.

• Employer contributions to a PRSA in respect of an employee will no longer attract a USC liability for the employee. This puts PRSAs back on a level playing field with Occupational Pension Schemes where employer contributions do not attract a USC liability for the employee.

• In future, a gain from a life policy will not be subject to exit tax for a non-resident who provides a non-resident declaration prior to the chargeable event.

Now if that didn’t get you over the fact that Ireland are out of the World Cup here’s some more riveting economic news.

Equities

Many of the world’s stock markets pushed ahead as investors grew more expectant that central banks will stick to loose monetary policies for longer than originally planned. Third quarter earnings season is also underway and investors are seeing enough in the early reports to maintain a positive approach. But overall, consensus forecasts are for a 4% fall in third-quarter profits among large US companies. And those companies that do not measure up to expectations are feeling the brunt of investor disappointment. Although the US market only finished the week 0.9% higher, it took the S&P 500 Index to an 8-week high. The Irish stock market was among the top performers, with financials in demand.

Bonds

In broad terms, developed country government bonds posted gains amid rising expectations that the US Federal Reserve may need to kick a first interest rate hike in almost a decade into 2016. Eurozone bonds advanced as speculation abounded that the European Central Bank might be considering an expansion of stimulus measures in order to keep the region’s economy moving forward.
The German 10-year bond yield fell in over the month from 0.80% to 0.56%.
Irish ten year bond yields decreased to 1.08% on Thursday October 22 from 1.17% in the previous trading day.

Commodities and Currency

Commodity prices overall were down again in September (-4.1%) in dollar terms, with oil prices down by around 10%. Diesel at the pumps is now under €1.20. Commodities are down 15.7% so far this year with some significant volatility.
The gold price was down 1.5% on the month, ending at $1,115 per troy ounce.
The euro currency was little changed against most the major currencies during September, although year-to-date the euro has been a weak currency.The €/$ rate was stable at 1.12 over the month.

Market Oct 15