It’s not just mining: profits have increased by more than wages in almost all industries
Yes the mining sector has booming profits, but they are not the only businesses whose profits are growing faster than the wages of their workers
Super Expensive, Super Unfair
Superannuation is supposed to help us save for our retirement, and tax concessions on super are meant to reduce the burden on the government to fund our retirement through the age pension. But what are these concessions, and are they really working in the way they are intended to? To help explain, we’re talking to
Super Tax Concessions now on par with Entire Aged Pension, Greater than NDIS: Research
New research shows the cost to the federal budget of generous superannuation tax concessions is now on par with the cost of the entire aged pension, and greater than the total cost of the entire NDIS in 2022-2023. Economists say billions could be saved if rules governing tax concessions for a minority of ultra-wealthy accounts
The Budget reveals the failure of the PRRT
Right now the gas industry is booming, but the Petroleum Resource Rent Tax is not.
The share of GDP going to workers hits a record low
The latest GDP figures show more than ever before workers are getting less than their fair share
The Wealth Explosion
In 2020, Australian GDP was $2 trillion but Australian households received another $1.7 trillion in capital gains as overall wealth increased to $12.7 trillion. But Australia currently has no taxes on wealth, so what does that mean for the economy in the long term and for reducing inequality?
Pocket Money: 14 Reasons Why The Case For A Company Tax Cut Has Collapsed
In a special “Pocket Money” episode of Follow the Money, released on the eve of the Budget, we discuss the 14 reasons why the case for the company tax cuts collapsed. See below for all the ways you can find our Budget analysis. Our original episode discussing the company tax cuts can be found here.
Response to ‘How company tax cuts got killed’ in The Australian Financial Review
On Friday 16 February the Australian Financial Review published an opinion piece on company tax and argued that The Australia Institute ‘undermined a policy that woud have created jobs, profits and a bigger economy’. Generally this is a good article which sets out how The Australia Institute undermined the Government’s plan to cut company taxes,
The Australia Institute’s podcast series, Follow the Money, this week takes on Company Tax. What is it? How much does it raise? Who pays it? Who is saying that we should cut it, and ‘cui bono’ – who benefits? Contributors: Richard Denniss – @RDNS_TAI Dave Richardson – not on twitter! Ebony Bennett – @ebony_bennett Produced by Jennifer
Student debt plan is a funny money scheme
Social policy and conservative debt management policy do not always go well together and a good example is the question of what to do with outstanding student debt. Why would private interests want to buy it? It only increases by the CPI and would perform poorly as a financial investment. A term account with a
The foreign takeover of GrainCorp – can Joe Hockey demand conditions?
At the moment the Abbott government’s position on foreign investment is being put to the test. GrainCorp is subject to a takeover bid by American company Archer Daniels Midland (ADM). This bid has received approval from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and we now await the decision of Treasurer, Joe Hockey.
The remaining agenda for free traders
Australia used to have very high protection rates for its manufacturing industries. Historically tariff quotas on motor vehicles meant that Australian car prices were double the prices for equivalents overseas. Many other manufactured goods were sold at multiples of the prices in overseas markets. Australia like many other countries imposed very high tariffs on most
There’s nothing nostalgic about a budget
A lot of the debate in Australia reflects concern about our future and how budgetary pressures are likely to evolve. The backdrop of the discussion is a profile of the predicted population in 40 years, what that means for expenditure and how we should be preparing for that outcome. The intergenerational reports have provided a
Business hypocritical on government debt
The Chicken Littles are at it again – scaring us about the level of government debt and the deficits that bring about debt. Gina Rinehart has claimed that the present level of government debt ‘is simply unsustainable’ and that ‘Australia had to take action to avoid following Europe into economic misery’. Ms Rinehart should know
Paid parental leave levy doesn’t add up
The Opposition has proposed a paid parental leave scheme that offers to replace a woman’s wage if she takes time off following the birth of her child. Tony Abbott expects to raise $3.5 billion with a 1.5 percentage point increase in the company tax rate. But the Australian taxation system is a complicated beast and
Newman’s power play is admirable
QUEENSLAND Premier Campbell Newman has stared down former federal treasurer Peter Costello and he deserves some credit for that. A stocktake of Australia’s electricity now, compared with two decades ago, confirms that the privatisation and corporatisation of the sector has been a massive failure. An analysis of the sector since Victoria privatised power in the
Mining The Truth Factsheet
This factsheet details the real economic impacts of the mining boom using information from our Mining the truth research paper.
Report shows Big Four banks are scoring off household mortgages
THE big banks are creaming off almost $100,000 in profit from struggling home owners in our major capital cities, data shows. The banks’ profit levels on the average 25-year mortgage more than doubled in the past 12 years as property prices rose. The numbers raise questions about claims from the banks that higher funding costs
Super subsidies: a budget spending secret
The budget papers mask some public spending by classifying it as ‘tax expenditures’ The amount the federal government spends on superannuation subsidies is forecast to hit $45 billion in 2015-16. Yes: $45 billion! That’s well over 10 per cent of the government’s total projected outlays and bigger than the amount spent on the age pension.
Why the obsession with a budget surplus?
Budget one-upmanship in Australia has moved beyond the balanced-budget obsession of the 1990s to the new aim of producing an ongoing surplus, the bigger the better, under which it is taken for granted that everyone will be better off. Despite the recent natural disasters offering good reasons for the Gillard Government to reassess its commitment
Accounting for a super mystery
We’ve all heard that the Australian Public Service’s superannuation schemes are generous, and a look at the budget papers would seem to confirm this, revealing that the Government is spending $14.1 billion on this entitlement. Put another way, public servants’ super appears to be a staggering 73 per cent of the $19.2 billion spent on
Why we need a Resource Super Profits Tax
The Minerals Council of Australia’s advertising campaign against the Resource Super Profits Tax (RSPT) highlights its $80 billion tax payments over the last decade. Eighty billion dollars in the abstract does not really mean much. It has to be related to the mining industry’s profits and compared with other industries. Using the national accounts as
A licence to print money: bank profits in Australia
Banking is an essential part of the Australian economy – almost an essential service. So why should it be “extremely profitable” to use the former RBA’s Governor’s words? Why do bankers have to be exceedingly privileged? What does that mean to those of us who need to use the banking system? And what can we
Peoples bank deja vu: a spotted history of competition in the banking sector
The global financial crisis has meant Australia’s top four banks have moved into the world’s top 10 banks in terms of financial soundness. While that says a lot about Australia’s regulators and regulatory environment, the global financial crisis has also meant much of their competition has been wiped out as customers consolidate around ‘sound and
Was the mining boom good for you?
The mining boom bonanza barely spread beyond the mining industry itself but the negative implications of the mining boom were felt very widely. This is important in view of the current suggestions that the end of the mining boom implies that Australians will have to tighten their belts. Symmetry should apply in the event of
Where has all the revenue gone?
Tax cuts for the rich damage the Australian economy and disadvantage the average Australian.
Where has all the revenue gone? To tax cuts for the rich!
Right up until the end of the resources boom and the onset of the global financial and economic crisis, the government was flush with money, a result of the virtually continual ‘surprises’ as economic growth, and especially government revenue, came in way over budget forecasts in each of the years from 2003-04 to 2007-08. By
Tanya Martin Office Manager
Jake Wishart Senior Media Adviser