IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Quantifying Revenue Windfalls from the Irish Housing Market


  • Addison-Smyth, Diarmaid

    (Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland)

  • McQuinn, Kieran

    (Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland)

  • O' Reilly, Gerard

    (Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland)


The speed and severity of the decline in the Irish fiscal position in recent years raises a number of important issues regarding the assessment of fiscal policy within the EU. From a position of relative strength, with large surpluses and low debt to GDP ratio, the Irish public finances have rapidly deteriorated, culminating in an Excessive Deficit Procedure being launched in early 2009. In hindsight, it is evident that tax revenues were on an unsustainable path in recent years due, in large part, to structural imbalances within the economy, mainly associated with the housing market. The excess growth in the latter culminated in large and transitory tax revenue windfalls, which ultimately proved unsustainable. These windfalls contributed to large general government and cyclically adjusted budget surpluses. This paper seeks to quantify the windfall gains associated with property taxes through modelling housing related tax receipts over the period 2002 to 2009. From this, estimates are derived as to the underlying or property adjusted fiscal position, which is found in various years, to have diverged greatly from actual outturns.

Suggested Citation

  • Addison-Smyth, Diarmaid & McQuinn, Kieran & O' Reilly, Gerard, 2009. "Quantifying Revenue Windfalls from the Irish Housing Market," Research Technical Papers 10/RT/09, Central Bank of Ireland.
  • Handle: RePEc:cbi:wpaper:10/rt/09

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lutz, Byron F., 2008. "The Connection Between House Price Appreciation and Property Tax Revenues," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 61(3), pages 555-572, September.
    2. McQuinn, Kieran & O'Reilly, Gerard, 2006. "Assessing the Role of Income and Interest Rates in Determining House Prices," Research Technical Papers 15/RT/06, Central Bank of Ireland.
    3. Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 1993. "A Simple Estimator of Cointegrating Vectors in Higher Order Integrated Systems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(4), pages 783-820, July.
    4. Muellbauer, John & Murphy, Anthony, 1997. "Booms and Busts in the UK Housing Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(445), pages 1701-1727, November.
    5. Addison-Smyth, Diarmaid & McQuinn, Kieran & O'Reilly, Gerard, 2009. "Modelling Credit in the Irish Mortgage Market," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 40(4), pages 371-392.
    6. McQuinn, Kieran & O' Reilly, Gerard, 2007. "A Model of Cross-Country House Prices," Research Technical Papers 5/RT/07, Central Bank of Ireland.
    7. Trevor Fitzpatrick & Kieran Mcquinn, 2007. "House Prices And Mortgage Credit: Empirical Evidence For Ireland," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 75(1), pages 82-103, January.
    8. Isabelle Joumard & Christophe André, 2008. "Revenue Buoyancy and its Fiscal Policy Implications," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 598, OECD Publishing.
    9. Byron F. Lutz, 2008. "The connection between house price appreciation and property tax revenues," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2008-48, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Bergin, Adele & Conefrey, Thomas & FitzGerald, John & Kearney, Ide, 2010. "Recovery Scenarios for Ireland: An Update," Forecasting Report, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number jacb201051.
    2. Philip R. Lane, 2013. "External imbalances and macroeconomic policy," New Zealand Economic Papers, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(1), pages 53-70, April.
    3. Barrett, Alan & Bergin, Adele & Kelly, Elish & McGuinness, Seamus, 2014. "Ireland's Recession and the Immigrant/Native Earnings Gap," IZA Discussion Papers 8459, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Bénétrix, Agustín S. & Lane, Philip R., 2013. "Fiscal cyclicality and EMU," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 164-176.
    5. Cronin, David & McQuinn, Kieran, 2014. "Irish Fiscal Policy in Good Times and in Bad: Its Impact During Different Stages of the Economic Cycle," Quarterly Economic Commentary: Special Articles, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    6. Yvonne McCarthy & Kieran McQuinn, 2011. "How Are Irish Households Coping with their Mortgage Repayments? Information from the Survey on Income and Living Conditions," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 42(1), pages 71-94.
    7. Hickey, Rónán & Smyth, Diarmaid, 2015. "Government revenues in Ireland since the financial crisis," Economic Letters 07/EL/15, Central Bank of Ireland.
    8. Lawless, Martina & Lynch, Donal, 2016. "Scenarios and Distributional Implications of a Household Wealth Tax in Ireland," Papers WP549, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    9. Michelle Norris & Michael Byrne, 2015. "Asset Price Keynesianism, Regional Imbalances and the Irish and Spanish Housing Booms and Busts," Working Papers 201514, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
    10. McQuinn, Kieran & Addison-Smyth, Diarmaid, 2015. "Assessing the Sustainable Nature of Housing-Related Taxation Receipts: The Case of Ireland," Papers WP503, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    11. Hickey, Rónán & Smyth, Diarmaid, 2015. "The Financial Crisis in Ireland and Government Revenues," Quarterly Bulletin Articles, Central Bank of Ireland, pages 60-71, October.
    12. Constantin Gurdgiev & Brian M. Lucey & Ciarán Mac an Bhaird & Lorcan Roche-Kelly, 2011. "The Irish Economy: Three Strikes and You’re Out?," Panoeconomicus, Savez ekonomista Vojvodine, Novi Sad, Serbia, vol. 58(1), pages 19-41, March.
    13. repec:iza:izawol:journl:2018:n:410 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. McQuinn, Kieran & Roche,Maurice, 2016. "Efficient Frontiers and Fiscal Stability: An Ex-ante and Ex-post Application to the Irish Public Finances," Papers WP538, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    15. Philip R. Lane, 2011. "External Imbalances and Macroeconomic Policy in New Zealand," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp376, IIIS.
    16. Philip Lane, 2010. "Some Lessons for Fiscal Policy from the Financial Crisis," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp334, IIIS.
    17. Agustín S. Bénétrix & Philip R. Lane, 2012. "The Cyclical Conduct of Irish Fiscal Policy," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(10), pages 1277-1290, October.
    18. repec:eso:journl:v:47:y:2016:i:3:p:391-423 is not listed on IDEAS
    19. Philip Lane, 2010. "External Imbalances and Fiscal Policy," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp314, IIIS.

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cbi:wpaper:10/rt/09. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Fiona Farrelly). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.