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Press Release No. 11 2010 - Treasury Economic Roundup: Issue 4 2010


Saturday, 18 December 2010

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Issue 4, 2010 of the Treasury Economic Roundup contains three recent speeches by members of Treasury’s Executive Board and articles prepared by Treasury staff.

The first speech was delivered by Dr Ken Henry AC, Secretary to the Treasury; Measuring what we do or doing what we measure: challenges for Australia to the NatStats 2010 Conference on 16 September 2010. The second speech was delivered by Dr David Gruen, Executive Director (Domestic), Macroeconomic Group, who presented a speech entitled MySuper — thinking seriously about the default option to the 2010 Australian Conference of Economists. The third speech was delivered by Jim Murphy, Executive Director, Markets Group; Bank competition in the post crisis environment to the Citi Australia Investment Conference on 26 October 2010.

The first article looks at Australia’s marginal tax rates, tax offsets and the Medicare levy. The article examines the complexity of Australia’s personal income tax schedule as a result of the range of tax offsets, which are designed to reduce tax liability for certain taxpayers. The article discusses the adverse impacts of high levels of tax system complexity, and describes the operation of the low income tax offset and the Medicare levy to illustrate how offsets and other features of the tax system can add complexity and reduce transparency.

A regular report summarising the outcomes of Treasury’s Business Liaison Program is also included. Treasury staff held discussions with businesses and industry associations during November 2010. The report outlines the key themes that arose in these discussions.

The final article is the fifteenth in a series of biographies of Australia’s Federal treasurers. After assisting Joseph Lyons on Treasury matters while Lyons was both prime minister and treasurer, Richard Casey formally became treasurer in 1935 — serving for 3½ years.

17 December 2010

Contact: Andrew Craston
Domestic Economy Division
Telephone: (02) 6263 3216

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Economic Roundup Issue 4, 2010 - 18/12/2010
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