Opening Bell: Construction jobs way up, Irish concerned over Brexit future, minimum wage hike could be delayed

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Ireland has seen a huge increase in demand for jobs in the construction sector.

Roles for property professionals in July were up by 40% on the same time last year.

Global recruitment company Hays has issued a report showing unprecedented hiring activity driven by the urgent need for property.

Hays MD Richard Eardley said the need for housing needs to be addressed:

"We've not been building very many houses for a long time so there's a lag. So even if we built a lot of houses in the next year – which doesn't look that likely – we're still be playing a bit of catch-up.

"I think the housing problem that we have particularly around Dublin is one supply.

"That does need to be addressed. Not in the frenzied way it was dealt with a decade or more ago with what has now become ghost estates. But in a more planned and thought-out way."

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A proposed merger between waste collection companies Panda and Greenstar have been given the go-ahead to merge, reports the Irish Times.

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has approved Panda's bid for Greenstar, as long as the enlarged group Pandagreen sells its business in Dublin's Fingal and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown council areas.

A CCPC statement confirmed that Pandagreen is set to sell these operations to other major refuse collection player Greyhound.

It said:

“If the sale to Greyhound does not proceed, the commitments require that the two identified businesses be sold to an alternative purchaser or purchasers to be approved by the CCPC."

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The planned 10 cent increase in the Irish minimum wage could be delayed, according to the Irish Independent.

The paper reports Government sources as saying that there has been a "rethink" over the minimum wage issue following a number of economic warnings due to the Brexit vote.

It would mean the increase would not be included in Budget 2017.

Jobs Minister Mary Mitchel O'Connor has learnt that employers cut workers' hours to cut costs following last year's decision to increase the minimum wage by 50 cent.

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Close to two-thirds of Irish people are worried about the future of the country following the UK's decision to leave the EU.

A new survey conducted by the GroupM media group also found that 43% of Irish people are confused about what Brexit will mean for Ireland.

However, consumer confidence has remained steady, with just one-third of people believing Brexit will have a negative impact on the economy. Some 32% believe it will improve.