Thursday, April 07, 2011

Hundreds of thousands of us really, really hate doing tax

If you want Australians to do their tax, it’s wise to bribe them. Tax statistics released yesterday show the number of Australians submitting returns climbed to an to an all-time high in 2007-08, the year the government offered stimulus bonus payment of up to $900 conditional on filling in the forms.

In the following tax year 2008-09 the number of personal returns submitted slipped 3 per cent as 349,000 fewer taxpayers bothered, despite a 2 per cent increase in the population.

Despite the drop more of us received deductions, the number climbing from 10.2 million to 10.3 million even as the number of forms submitted dived from 12.6 to 12.3 million.

An extra 165,000 of us claimed for gifts to charities despite the slide in the total number of returns, while the average size of the donations claimed slipped 13 per cent...

The highest declared incomes are in the postcodes representing Portsea in Victoria ($199,000 on average) and Darling Point and Edgecliff in Sydney ($176,000). Mosman, Bellevue Hill and Palm beach in Sydney follow and then Toorak in Melbourne, Watsons Bay in Sydney and Mosman Park in Perth.

The lowest declared incomes are in rural Victoria, South Australia and Queensland with Hexham near Warrnambool the lowest at $33,500 per head.

Taxable company income was flat in aggregate with reported mining income up 18 per cent, manufacturing income up 29 per cent, retail income up 11 per cent and financial services income down 34 per cent.

An ever greater proportion of us used our computers to submit tax returns with the number using e-tax climbing 76,500 and the number using tax agents slipping 425,500.

Published in today's SMH and Age

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