A recent survey by the Irish League of Credit Unions found that one-in-four Irish people had less than €20 a week to live on, after they had paid their bills. Now I don't know what the methodology of the survey was, nor the sample of people interviewed, but it certainly is a shocking statistic.
Then Superquinn went into receivership on Monday, only to be snapped up by wholesale giant Musgraves - a development greeted with a sigh of relief by the chain store's workers. Job losses, however are still to be expected.
Nothing, of course, to do with weekend and shift pay entitlements for poorly paid workers; but everything to do with bad property-based investment decisions made by Superquinn during the boom. A flagship store in Balfgriffin, for instance - now a ghost estate.
Lately, we have been treated to a steady drip-feed of job announcements from the coalition Government. Fine Gael / Labour have been playing it quite well - Enda Kenny's Roscommon Hospital Cockup aside. They certainly know a bit about choreography, and are making the most of the fact that they are not Fianna Fail.
So (comparatively) slick are they, that I would not be surprised if they get a reduction in Ireland's bailout interest rate soon, as part of a new overall EU-wide deal, if recent pronouncements by Olli Rehn are any guide.
If they do, however, it will not mean the scrapping of the Universal Social Charge and the postponement of a raft of extra taxes and charges in the next Budget. It will just mean Enda and the boys and girls can look good about it all.
The one-in-four people struggling for life's basic necessities are unlikely to notice much difference.
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