Dublin business activity drops to seven-year low

Business activity in Dublin has fallen to a seven-year low as the impact of the Covid-19 restrictions are felt.

The survey by IHS Markit, covering the first three months of the year, has reported a decline in manufacturing while the services and construction sectors slowed.

The slowdown is expected to accelerate in quarter two as the coronavirus measures remain in place.

"The Covid-19 pandemic pushed Dublin economic output into contraction in March, resulting in a stagnation across the first quarter as a whole after growth had been recorded in the first two months of the year," said Andrew Harker, Economics Director at IHS Markit.

"This in itself was the worst performance for over seven years. A decline in March was enough to push the manufacturing sector into contraction for Q1 as a whole, but the Covid-19 lockdown is substantially impacting the services and construction sectors as well.

"Prior to the outbreak, companies in the capital had been enjoying solid increases in output, meaning that the data for Q1 have held up better than in the Rest of Ireland.

"The effects of the pandemic are clearly going to be felt all over the country though, with the economy suffering a deep contraction at present.”

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