The recession was gathering pace in Ireland in 2009. The number on the Live Register had increased from 290,018 in December 2008 to 413,505 (+42%!) in December 2009. The number of people employed dropped from 2,054,600 in December 2008 to 1,887,700 at the end of 2009, a drop of 8.1%.
All of this was reflected in lower national income tax receipts. Total gross income dropped from €78,152 million to €71,673 million, (-8.2%).
109,109 (4.3%) of Ireland’s 2.1 million income tax payers declared incomes in excess of €100,000 in 2009. Almost 10,000 (9,895 to be precise) declared incomes between €250,001 and €500,000; 2,495 persons declared incomes between €500,001 and €1 million and 620 declared an annual income in excess of €1 million.
Between them they pocketed an annal income of €19,791 million, 27% of the total gross income earned in the country that year.
They collectively paid income tax of €4,915 million, 46% of the total income tax collected.
The average effective tax rate for all Irish income tax payers in 2009 was 12.9% and the net tax due on their gross income that year was €10,616 million, a reduction in total income tax receipts of 13.2% from 2008. The average effective tax rate for the high-earners was 25%.
Under 50% of the high earners had an effective tax rate of 30%, or less, in 2009. This is calculated as the percentage of total tax liability to gross income. Those high earners in Ireland who make significant use of certain specified tax reliefs have had to deal with tighter restrictions since 2010 so that a 30% effective tax arte applies for those subject to the full restriction. Those reliefs do not include those for health expense and standard tax credits, which are available to all taxpayers.
The demographic profile of Ireland 2.1 million income tax payers in 2009 comprised – 30% single males; 28% single females; 20% married and both are working while 17% were married but only one person is working. There were 20,171 widowers and 57,186 widows.
Over 982,000 (46%) of all income tax payers had an annual income of €25,000, or less, in 2009.