In some respects, the Irish stock market is quite healthy, with the average price of the 10-year Irish equities index rising from 3.76p in March to 4.42p in July, a decline of 0.4pc.
But that is the exception rather than the rule.
Ireland’s stock market has been hit by a spate of sell-offs.
On March 4, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.5pc, while the S&P 500 dropped 6.4%.
On March 12, the European stock market plunged 4pc.
On April 3, the Sustainability Index in the UK fell 2.5 per cent.
On April 8, the US stock market plummeted 5.8 per cent and the Dow fell a further 6.7 per cent, while China’s market slumped 8.5% and the SAC index of Shanghai slipped 9.5%.
The European Central Bank has been particularly hard hit by the sell-off, with European shares falling by an average of 5pc in the first three months of this year, a period when its banks have been under pressure from a spate.
The ECB has now cut its main lending rate to a record low of 0 per cent in an effort to boost growth.
Ireland’s stock markets are also resilient to the political uncertainty over Brexit, which has been exacerbated by the failure of the British government to deliver on the UK’s commitment to allow a second referendum.
In a sign of the fragile nature of the Irish economy, the Government is trying to persuade the Irish people to back the EU by advertising the country as a “safe haven” for Irish citizens to make a deposit in the euro.
“Ireland is a safe haven for the Irish and for the European economy and for our citizens and businesses,” said Finance Minister Michael Noonan.
“We are in a very fragile environment in Ireland, and the markets have responded to this.”
It is not clear whether the ECB’s efforts to reassure investors are succeeding, or whether they are simply helping the markets to keep the government in power.
Meanwhile, it is worth noting that the EU has the ability to intervene in Irish markets, including with the purchase of Irish government bonds.
What you need to know about the stock market: The Dow Jones index has risen 1.4 per cent since March 11, while S&s stock market index has dropped 0.3pc since then.
The SAC and Sustainabillies indices of Shanghai have also fallen by about 2pc.
Read more about stock market turmoil: In an effort that should reassure investors, the ECB has announced that it will buy up to €3.6bn worth of Irish Government bonds at a rate of around €3bn per day.
The ECB has also increased its funding for banks by €300m, to €1.6tn.
But this is unlikely to help the Irish Government’s finances, with its gross debt at nearly €12tn.
Why do we keep buying Irish stock?
The Irish stock markets have been hit with a spate, with Irish shares falling 1.6pc in April and 1.7pc in May.
On the other hand, the EU’s efforts are working, with banks having been able to take advantage of the weaker Irish economy to take out some of their mortgages.
And the Government seems to be backing the market by advertising that Ireland is a “safebay for the Irish and for Europe”.
What are the risks to the Irish market?
It remains to be seen whether the sell off will result in any significant impact on the Irish markets.
The main concern is that the selloffs could spark a further run on Irish bonds, which could lead to further volatility and higher yields on the bond market.
It is worth remembering that the euro is already on a downward trend and is not expected to rebound for at least another year.
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