100 Aussies: five charts on who earns, pays and owns

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Let's dive deeper.

1. Who pays tax?

Every decision on tax rates and welfare involves a trade-off which requires wealthy people to support poor people. That’s part of a fair society and a progressive tax system. At a high level, those who have look after those who have not.
There are infinite nuances. What about people who are able to work but choose not to? Should they be supported? That is why Centrelink has rules that some welfare recipients need to demonstrate they have tried to find employment.


2. Investment properties

Let’s turn to assets, with most household wealth held in residential property, soon to top $10 trillion after the recent price surge compared with about $3.2 trillion in superannuation.
Over 2.2 million Australians own investment property. That’s a lot of people enjoying the current housing boom (in addition to owners of Principal Places of Residence). Over 20,000 own six or more properties and it’s party time funded by low interest rates.


3. Taxable incomes

For FY19, the average taxable income was $62,549. As this number is inflated by some very high earners, a more representative number is the median (as many people above the number as below) of $47,492.


4. Average superannuation balances by age

Most people do not have much in superannuation, with the median stated at less than $50,000 (and women $45,000), as shown above. This disguises balances by age. Obviously, older people have more super. Most have been in the system longer, have benefited from compounding and good market returns, earn more than younger people with more opportunities to contribute extra.


5. SMSFs

Turning to another ATO report, the SMSF statistics for June 2021, reveals there are almost 600,000 SMSFs with over 1.1 million members holding assets of $822 billion. The top two asset types are direct holdings of listed shares (28% of total SMSF assets) and cash and term deposits (18%). In addition:



Source: Morningstar


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