A SIDE CONVERSATION a few days ago during Limerick OpenCoffee meandered around the wealth events logged by lucky Irish riding on the back of strong rises in property values and shares traded intelligently on large stock markets. If you left Ireland in the 80s or early 90s and returned today, you would probably notice that the net wealth of Irish people has topped the three quarters of a trillion mark for the first time in history. According to the Bank of Ireland's "Wealth of the Nation" survey, Irish household wealth rose by nearly 15 per cent in 2006. The truly wealthy have now entered a time when their transfer of wealth to the next generation will become a major issue. On top of that expected transfer will come pressures to the Irish Exchequer to fund some very generous pension arrangements for State employees. I intend to remain in Ireland as the wealth horizons reshape themselves, wondering if the country will reach a point where senior citizens draw down the prosperity enjoyed through property valuations instead of bequeathing it to the younger generation. Bulging pockets of money always seem to increase the potential for strife.
Richard Curran -- "Survey reveals net worth of Irish people up by EUR 100 billion" on the front page of the Sunday Business Post, 29 July 2007.