The latest What’s Left Tracker report from the Irish League of Credit Unions provides yet another important insight into the tightening financial squeeze faced by an increasing number of Irish citizens.
The report vividly points out the difficulties faced by those who are employed, most have less money remaining at the end of each month after essential bills are paid. This is a situation that has repeated and deteriorated since the tracker series began.
– 61% of respondents say they have €100 or less left at the end of the month once essential bills are paid
– 1.59 million left with €50 or less at the end of the month once the essential bills have been paid.
– 56% of the adult population believe that the worst is yet to come in terms of financial hardship this year.
Throughout the series of reports, a trend that surfaced is the positive impact various interest rate cuts have had since November 2011. In the periods immediately following each of the rate cuts, there was a limited easing of the financial pressure faced by families. Each quarter percentage rate cut reduces the monthly repayment on a €300,000 mortgage by approximately €45. However, what one hand gives, the other takes away; many of the benefits of the ECB rate cuts were quickly absorbed by rising costs elsewhere. More problematic, it now appears that the ECB may not announce any more rate cuts in the immediate future as it takes a wait-and-see approach to the wider Eurozone economy. If this proves to be the case, families are likely to see their personal financial situation become much more difficult.