Sinn Fein a Risk in Irish ‘Phoenix’ Economy, Commerzbank Says

The rise of the anti-austerity party Sinn Fein in Ireland should spark some concern among investors as a general election nears, Commerzbank AG said.

Sinn Fein is on track to almost double its vote in the forthcoming election to about 18 percent, polls indicate. Led by Gerry Adams, the party may be drawing support from the Labour Party, the junior member of the ruling coalition.

“The rise of Sinn Fein at the expense of Labour should raise some concerns that the fiscal stance may not be as tight in future as currently projected, given that Sinn Fein’s policies imply a much greater role for the state in the economy,” said Peter Dixon, an economist at Commerzbank in London, in a note which dubs the Irish economy a “phoenix from the ashes.”

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny, who faces an election within four months, will base his campaign for a second term on the nation’s recovery from the worst recession since at least

1945. With the economy growing again, voters are seeking payback for years of tax increases and spending cuts.

Combined support for Kenny’s Fine Gael and Labour stood at 37 percent, Paddy Power Plc said last week, citing a Red C poll. That compares to 55 percent in the 2011 election.

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