Top end of town pays $57bn tax

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 4 : 24-Apr-19

Data from the Australian Taxation Office shows that nearly 430,000 people had taxable income of at least $180,000 in fiscal 2017, an increase of 26 per cent since fiscal 2013. The total net tax they paid increased from $43 billion to $57bn. There was also a 17 per cent increase in the number of people with taxable income of $37,000 to $80,000, with their share of the total tax take rising from $47bn to $62bn. Tax cuts have been a key focus of the election campaign, but economics professor Richard Holden says a simpler option is to peg the tax system to wage inflation.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE, UNIVERSITY OF NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET

ALP vow: permanent work for casuals

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 24-Apr-19

Labor has doubled down on the Coalition’s commitment to legislate to allow casual workers to apply to become permanent employees after 12 months of regular and ongoing work with the same employer. Labor will also amend the Fair Work Act to allow such workers to legally challenge a refusal of their request to become a permanent employee. More than 50 per cent of Australia’s 2.6 million casual employees have worked for the same employer for at least 12 months.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Morrison fund woos small enterprises

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 17 : 23-Apr-19

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg will launch a $100 million government-backed fund that will provide equity funding to small businesses. The Australian Business Growth Fund is based on similar initiatives in the UK and Canada. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has pledged to create 250,000 new small businesses over the next five years, with 230,000 small businesses having been launched over the last five years. National Australia Bank is in charge of efforts to launch the Australian Business Growth Fund.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, HSBC AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS PTY LTD

Fightback on penalty rates

Original article by Ben Packham, Dennis Shanahan, Alice Workman
The Australian – Page: 1 & 5 : 22-Apr-19

Labor plans to reconvene federal parliament before 30 June if it wins the election, in order to capitalise on a Senate that may be more amenable to its proposed industrial relations reforms. Amongst other things, Labor intends to reverse cuts to penalty rates within its first 100 days in office. However, Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox has written to Senate crossbenchers warning that Labor’s workplace reforms would require more extensive consultation than would be possible by the end of June.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN GREENS, CENTRE ALLIANCE

CFMEU pushing closed shop ahead of possible Labor win

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 23-Apr-19

The New South Wales branch of the Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining & Energy Union has declined to comment on claims that it has adopted a ‘no ticket, no start’ policy at construction sites in Sydney. The Master Builders Association has raised concerns about the practice, with executive director Brian Seidler fearing that the push for compulsory union membership on building sites will spread to other states. The federal government’s building code – which Labor wants to abolish – prohibits ‘no ticket, no start’ arrangements.

CORPORATES
CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MARITIME, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, MASTER BUILDERS ASSOCIATION OF NEW SOUTH WALES PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIAN BUILDING AND CONSTRUCTION COMMISSION

Revealed: Bill’s carbon costs

Original article by Simon Benson, Ben Packham
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 18-Apr-19

The Greens believe that Labor’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target is too dependent on the use of international carbon credits. Greens MP Adam Bandt has signalled that the party could use its numbers in the Senate to block any legislation that mandates the use of international carbon credits. Meanwhile, some estimates suggest that Australian businesses could be forced to pay up to $25bn to purchase international carbon credits under Labor. This is based on an average price of $50 per carbon credit over the next decade.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIAN GREENS, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND ENERGY, INTERGOVERNMENTAL PANEL ON CLIMATE CHANGE, BAECONOMICS PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS

Record 1.3 million landlords cash in on negative gearing as shake-up looms

Original article by Ben Butler, Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 19 & 26 : 17-Apr-19

Data from the Australian Taxation Office shows that the number of property investors who use negative gearing rose from 631,000 to about 1.3 million between 2000 and 2017. In contrast, the number of investors who broke even or made a profit rose from 532,000 to around 856,000. The figures also show that the proportion of investors who are aged 60+ rose from around 15 per cent to about 23.5 per cent. Robert Deutsch of the Tax Institute does not expect Labor’s proposed negative gearing reforms to have much effect on housing prices.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE, THE TAX INSTITUTE, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, BIS OXFORD ECONOMICS PTY LTD, UNIVERSITY OF NEW SOUTH WALES

Shorten’s $34b super gaffe

Original article by Andrew Tillett, Tom McIlroy
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 6 : 17-Apr-19

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten used a press conference on 16 April to state that Labor will not increase existing taxes on superannuation or introduce new taxes if it wins the federal election. Shadow finance minister Jim Chalmers later clarified Shorten’s comments, stating that he meant there will be no changes to super policy apart from those that have been previously announced. Labor has in fact previously announced four proposed changes to super policy. The Coalition has estimated that these reforms could increase tax revenue by about $34bn over a decade.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, GRATTAN INSTITUTE

Labor flags R&D reprieve on clawbacks

Original article by Paul Smith
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 19 & 20 : 16-Apr-19

Shadow innovation minister Kim Carr says Labor will look at how to lift expenditure on research and development to three per cent of GDP by 2030 if it wins the federal election. He notes that R&D expenditure is currently at 1.8 per cent of GDP, compared with 2.1 per cent in 2013. Carr says Labor will seek to have start-ups exempted from the R&D tax incentive clawbacks that impacted the technology sector in late 2018, while he claims that over 1,000 scientists have lost their jobs under the current government.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, DULUXGROUP LIMITED – ASX DLX, AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

Why Morrison needs to turn up the fear factor on Labor

Original article by Robert Gottliebsen
The Australian – Page: 29 : 16-Apr-19

The Coalition’s best chance of winning the federal election may to be to launch a fear campaign against key Labor policies, such as its franking credit reforms and changes to the negative gearing regime. The latter policy will almost certainly result in lower house values over time; the Coalition should pitch its fear campaign at home buyers who are in or are close to being in negative equity, as well as small business owners who use their homes as capital. However, Prime Minister Scott Morrison is unlikely to seek to cash in on the fear factor until it is far too late.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET