New figures from the Central Statistics Office show that households saved over €31 billion in 2020, bringing their financial net worth to an all-time high of €312.8 billion.
The CSO said this is almost three times the level of saving before the Covid-19 pandemic and is the result of higher household incomes and lower consumer spending due to Covid restrictions.
It noted that incomes for those who continued to work through the restrictions rose on average, while an €8.8 billion government intervention mitigated the decline in incomes for those out of work because of the pandemic.
The addition of €16 billion in deposits was the biggest area for asset growth and the CSO said that compared with 2006, at the height of the Special Saving Incentive Accounts (SSIA), when under €12 billion was added to deposits.
Savings also went into paying off debt, pensions and real assets like new homes, today’s figures show.
But the Covid restrictions that produced higher savings for households also led to an 8% decline in profits for Irish owned companies, with those in travel and hospitality hardest hit.
At the same time, the foreign multinationals here, which are mainly in technology and pharmaceuticals, saw profit growth of 12% in their Irish operations, the CSO said.