- Banking & Finance
- Employment & Unemployment
- Future of Work
- Gender at Work
- Gig Economy
- Industry & Sector Policies
- Infrastructure & Construction
- Insecure & Precarious Work
- Labour Standards & Workers' Rights
- Population & Migration
- Public Sector, Procurement & Privatisation
- Science & Technology
- Social Security & Welfare
- Tax, Spending & the Budget
- Unions & Collective Bargaining
- Wages & Entitlements
- Young Workers
- Climate & Energy
- Democracy & Accountability
- International & Security Affairs
- Law, Society & Culture
Self-funded or State-funded Retirees?
Tax breaks for superannuation will cost the Federal Budget $52.5 billion in 2022-23, almost equal to the $55.3 billion spent on the aged pension. Super concessions benefit the rich, while the pension is important for the poor. Major reform is overdue.
Reserve Bank Review
This is the Australia Institute’s submission to the review into the functions and operations of the Reserve Bank of Australia (“the RBA”).
Reforming the Petroleum Resource Rent Tax
The present PRRT generates no revenue until the project sponsor gets back all their capital together with the permitted uplift factors. The problem with this approach is that no PRRT revenue is generated for many years which might exceed the life of the project and/or outlast the high returns—the economic rent that should be taxed.
Raising Revenue in Australia
Australians want more public services that will require more government revenue. This paper summarises Australia’s tax system, its international context, and principles to guide its reform.
The roles of profits, wages and costs in driving inflation has been widely discussed in recent months. Claims by the Business Council of Australia that profit shares are at a 20-year low are not supported by official data sources.
Are Wages or Profits Driving Australia’s Inflation?
Labour costs have played an insignificant role in the recent increase in inflation, accounting for just 15 percent of economy wide price increases while profits have played an overwhelming role, accounting for about 60 percent of recent inflation.
Foreign investment in Australia
New research reveals the companies profiting from the $62.5 billion LNG industry exporting Australian gas – a key driver of shock domestic gas prices for households and business – are on average 95.7% foreign owned. The research also reveals that the top 20 ASX listed companies in Australia are, on average, 80% foreign owned, with US ownership alone almost triple Australian
Give Me Money
The Business Council of Australia (BCA) is again proposing a cut in company tax rates. There is little that is new: the BCA has been advocating this proposal or a similar one ever since it came into existence in the early 1980s. Currently, the BCA proposes to cut by way of increasing the threshold below
Bending the Trend
The Morrison Government has released a ‘whole of economy plan’ to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. While they are yet to reveal the underlying economic modelling on which the plan was based, it is still possible to consider the plausibility of the results of the modelling even when the assumptions behind the modelling remain
Principles of a good tax
How we tax has a big impact on our society. The decision of what and how much to tax is important. This paper provides policy makers with five principles to evaluate our taxation choices.
Funding High-Quality Aged Care Services: A Summary
The Centre for Future Work has prepared a 4-page summary of our recent detailed report on funding needed improvements in aged care services in Australia, in the wake of recommendations from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.
Funding High-Quality Aged Care Services
Implementing the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety will require additional Commonwealth funding of at least $10 billion per year, and there are several revenue tools which the government could use to raise those funds. While the Royal Commission’s 148 recommendations were not explicitly costed, the Centre’s report shows that
Missing a Stitch in Time:
Australia’s electricity industry constitutes a large and critical component of our national economic infrastructure. The industry produces $25 billion per year in value- added. It employs around 50,000 Australians, paying out $6 billion per year in wages and salaries. It makes $45 billion in annual purchases from a diverse and far-reaching supply chain, that provides the sector with inputs ranging from resources to equipment to construction to services.
How to make the Budget less sexist
Budget policy has traditionally advantaged men over women. This paper makes seven recommendations on how to improve women’s economic security and use the budget as a tool to reduce gender inequality.
Google’s Assessment of Google
This paper examines claims by Google and its consultants that the company generates massive economic benefits for Australia—$39 billion for business and $14 billion for consumers. These claims are massively overstated and, as might be expected, negative aspects of Google’s practices are not acknowledged.
JobKeeper: Eligible vs ineligible workers
JobKeeper: A proposal for clawing back unnecessary spending
Rather than dumping JobKeeper, we can reform it in such a way that more of the payment is clawed back by the government and that can be done by making it taxable at a much higher rate than other business income. This can be achieved very quickly, merely by increasing the rate at which JobKeeper
Gender experiences during the COVID-19 lockdown
The health response to COVID-19 has resulted in large increases in measured unemployment and underemployment as well as large falls in the total number of hours worked. While the size of these labour market effects has been widely discussed, the gender distribution of these impacts has not.
Government debt won’t hurt us
Treasury forecasts unemployment rising to 10 per cent in the June quarter and that without the JobKeeper allowance unemployment would be 5 per cent higher at 15 per cent. The Government responded with a series of spending packages with a cumulative total of $193.6 billion. That inevitably means more deficit spending over and the next
Inquiry into Foreign Investment Proposals
The Australia institute is pleased to make the present submission to the Senate Economics Committee Inquiry into foreign investment proposals. This submission begins with some general thoughts based on earlier work at The Australia Institute. We note that Australia’s history has included rigorous debates about foreign ownership of the Australian economy. Sometimes that debate has taken
‘Snap back’ or slide down: The impact of a 10 percent recession on the growth path for Australian GDP
If the Australian economy shrinks by 10 percent in the first half of 2020 it will likely take at least 21 months before Gross Domestic Product (GDP) reaches the levels achieved in the December quarter of 2019. Australia has never experienced such a deep and long-lasting reduction in the level of its national income. In
Design Principles for Fiscal Policy in a Pandemic
The economic crisis brought on by the coronavirus pandemic requires fast, large, effective and well targeted fiscal stimulus. While the size of the government’s initial three spending packages is appropriate as an initial response, both the shape of that response and the design of future spending measures need to be carefully evaluated. This paper argues
A generous increase in Newstart?
On Sunday 22 March the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, and Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, announced a package of measures as part of their Economic Response to the Coronavirus (ERC). That response included a new Coronavirus Supplement to the Jobseeker Payment (formerly Newstart) to be paid at $550 per fortnight. This is a significant and unprecedented increase in
The Budget Surplus Objective
Tolerate Unemployment, but Blame the Unemployed
For the last generation macroeconomic policy in Australia has been based on the assumption that unemployment must be maintained at a certain minimum level in order to restrain wages and prevent an outbreak of accelerating inflation. Now, after six years of record-low wage growth – which weakened even further in the latest ABS wage statistics – it is time for that policy to be abandoned.
Adequacy of Newstart – Submission
‘Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing, and medical care and necessary social services’. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 25