Online tax to recover GST

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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby stanevelyn » Wed Dec 26, 2012 6:08 pm

jimboss wrote:
stanevelyn wrote:I don't drink.
And I would rather buy all my bike parts from overseas rather than here. After all it is my money, and I won't have business or anybody else tell me how and where to spend it. I know that businesses pass all their expenses on to the customer, including GST. I'm not denying anybody an income or profit, just that when mark ups on cycling goods are very high locally, I shop elsewhere. And if O/S is cheaper then there I will shop, GST or not.


You sure?

You completely missed the point with GST - of course a shop will pass GST on. If not they are making less money. The point of GST is that it will be passed on.

While business can claim GST on input costs, the GST on sale price goes to the government. Sure it's near on zero sum for the business in terms of tax flow - it will either increase price or decrease profit.

As much as i hate to say it, retailers have a legitimate gripe that parcels under $1000 avoid tax. HOWEVER, many would be deluded to think that GST on imports would make them instantly competitive. Although I think the 'pain in the ass' factor may influence some people away from O/S stores.

End of the day, Australia is a much more expensive place to do business. Wages, property, etc are all much steeper than o/s. Let alone size of our market.

I understand and sympathise with your 'I shop local when it makes sense' and 'tacking GST onto imports wouldn't change my behaviour' sentiments but your first post really missed the mark.

redned wrote:What I find odd is that during the tech-boom in 2000, which shortly became the tech-wrech, the internet-as-market model was being promoted as the new age answer to everyone's problems. Business and consumer were going to benefit by everything being on-line. Now that we are there, retailers are complaining that their old-fashioned business model doesn't work. Their problems are not caused by no-GST on low value items.
Coming into an election year, I wouldn't put it past the government extending GST to low value items, fudging the cost-benefit.


I would be super surprised if we saw the Gillard government introduce a new tax. The pressure from retailers would not outweigh the negative reaction from the wider electorate, or simply the 'big fat tax' fuel the liberals would gain.


Your'e right. I certainly hope that the Government makes wise decisions on this matter.
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by BNA » Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:28 pm

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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby Mike Ayling » Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:28 pm

il padrone wrote:This sort of grand offer is a symptom of the problems with Australian retail.

Kathmandu wrote:If you spend $100.00 or more with us in a single transaction, we will deliver this to you for FREE! Under this and your delivery will be charged at $10.00.


On-line stores in the US will do free delivery nationwide, regardless of value of spend. Wiggle's free delivery for >$80 is for international shipping. They see it as a big step but it still doesn't cut the mustard, and Kathmandu is no small player.


AFAICR all the British outlets that I have dealt with, Wiggle, Evans, CRC, etc have the free freight over a certain value AUD80 to AUD100 so Kathmandu is not out of line.
My personal opinion of Kathmandu is that they charge like bulls most of the time then offer substantial discounts at sale time. Not a problem for me as we are well stocked with camping equipment at present. The last summer weight down bag that I purchased from them was at least 50% off including members club discount and I did not have to pay to join the members club at that time.

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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby il padrone » Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:38 pm

Mike Ayling wrote:AFAICR all the British outlets that I have dealt with, Wiggle, Evans, CRC, etc have the free freight over a certain value AUD80 to AUD100 so Kathmandu is not out of line.

The way they are a poor offer is that those UK sites offer free shipping globally, Kathmandu is only offering it across Australia. As I said, in the US on-line stores give free shipping nationally with no spend limits.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby Xplora » Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:24 pm

il padrone wrote:
Mike Ayling wrote:AFAICR all the British outlets that I have dealt with, Wiggle, Evans, CRC, etc have the free freight over a certain value AUD80 to AUD100 so Kathmandu is not out of line.

The way they are a poor offer is that those UK sites offer free shipping globally, Kathmandu is only offering it across Australia. As I said, in the US on-line stores give free shipping nationally with no spend limits.

This is 100% due to Fedex and UPS etc, our equivalents are incredibly pricey in comparison to the US couriers. The US online stores CAN run such programs because the infrastructure allows it. They also have very different labour laws to us - the best of the industrialised and third world, it seems. A US carrier is able to run shipping more efficiently than ours can due to population spreads.

The most fascinating thing I find with the failure of online in Australia is that our nation has the highest penetration of technology per head in the whole world. More people online, more people with mobiles, first to upgrade stuff etc. It doesn't make sense that online shopping isn't as strong as elsewhere, but it does go to show that there is more to online shopping than just websites and a credit card portal.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby gdt » Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:43 am

The government eventually does need to tax overseas online transactions -- eventually too much revenue will leak as people move from in-store to on-line. The problem is how to find an efficient way to do it. Obviously the author of the paper is exploring the moment of foreign exchange as an efficient way to gather the tax. Since we're talking about a limited number of credit card processors and bank-like institutions (I'd include PayPal in that) then they might be right, it's certainly worth Treasury's time exploring the consequences further.

That such a paper is distrubuted in secret rather than being distributed for industry and public comment is rather damning of the way Canberra works these days. But also damning of the way the media works: you can't have a discussion when the media beats up the populace as part of its own sales strategy.

I personally think the beat-up misses the bigger picture: the complete and utter failure of Australian retail to have a globally dominating sales presence in any online segment. Australia has a large number of Internet users, a well-priced postal service, cheap warehouse space, available capital. What went wrong? Was it simply that hoping for innovation from Australia retailers was simply too much, because they don't want to innovate (as that implies lower short run profits, riskier business, etc). In short, are our retailers too used to an anti-competitive market that the sales opportunity of a lifetime slipped by?
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby KonaCommuter » Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:32 am

gdt wrote:I personally think the beat-up misses the bigger picture: the complete and utter failure of Australian retail to have a globally dominating sales presence in any online segment. Australia has a large number of Internet users, a well-priced postal service, cheap warehouse space, available capital. What went wrong? Was it simply that hoping for innovation from Australia retailers was simply too much, because they don't want to innovate (as that implies lower short run profits, riskier business, etc). In short, are our retailers too used to an anti-competitive market that the sales opportunity of a lifetime slipped by?



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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby greyhoundtom » Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:06 am

gdt wrote:
I personally think the beat-up misses the bigger picture: the complete and utter failure of Australian retail to have a globally dominating sales presence in any online segment. Australia has a large number of Internet users, a well-priced postal service, cheap warehouse space, available capital. What went wrong? Was it simply that hoping for innovation from Australia retailers was simply too much, because they don't want to innovate (as that implies lower short run profits, riskier business, etc). In short, are our retailers too used to an anti-competitive market that the sales opportunity of a lifetime slipped by?

The only item that I don’t agree with is the assertion that Australia has a well priced postage service, particularly when it comes to small parcels.

Case in point..... yesterday my wife posted a small scarf that weight very little to my daughter in Launceston Tassie, and the cheapest standard parcel post available cost $6.60

She was not impressed

Then most of the time the parcel won’t actually be delivered to the address, but only a card left behind and the parcel still than has to be picked up from the local post office.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby boss » Fri Dec 28, 2012 1:01 pm

greyhoundtom wrote:
gdt wrote:
I personally think the beat-up misses the bigger picture: the complete and utter failure of Australian retail to have a globally dominating sales presence in any online segment. Australia has a large number of Internet users, a well-priced postal service, cheap warehouse space, available capital. What went wrong? Was it simply that hoping for innovation from Australia retailers was simply too much, because they don't want to innovate (as that implies lower short run profits, riskier business, etc). In short, are our retailers too used to an anti-competitive market that the sales opportunity of a lifetime slipped by?

The only item that I don’t agree with is the assertion that Australia has a well priced postage service, particularly when it comes to small parcels.

Case in point..... yesterday my wife posted a small scarf that weight very little to my daughter in Launceston Tassie, and the cheapest standard parcel post available cost $6.60

She was not impressed

Then most of the time the parcel won’t actually be delivered to the address, but only a card left behind and the parcel still than has to be picked up from the local post office.


I am with you there. Anything that doesn't fit in a large envelope (A4 I believe) and is under 500g is charged at $6.60.

In Australia it's a case of - cheap, fast, reliable - pick two. Our land mass is too big, and population too small and sprawled.

The other issue that everyone glosses over (just in terms of competitive online retailers) is our labor costs are way high. Minimum wage is, what, $5 (?) in the states? In China, the average income is $6000 a year. Contrast that with Australia - guys working in a Coles warehouse in Australia can expect to earn between $25-40 p/hour on a forklift.

Countries with lower wages have the competitive advantage when selling globally. Economics 101.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby KonaCommuter » Fri Dec 28, 2012 1:25 pm

jimboss wrote:
greyhoundtom wrote:
gdt wrote:
I personally think the beat-up misses the bigger picture: the complete and utter failure of Australian retail to have a globally dominating sales presence in any online segment. Australia has a large number of Internet users, a well-priced postal service, cheap warehouse space, available capital. What went wrong? Was it simply that hoping for innovation from Australia retailers was simply too much, because they don't want to innovate (as that implies lower short run profits, riskier business, etc). In short, are our retailers too used to an anti-competitive market that the sales opportunity of a lifetime slipped by?

The only item that I don’t agree with is the assertion that Australia has a well priced postage service, particularly when it comes to small parcels.

Case in point..... yesterday my wife posted a small scarf that weight very little to my daughter in Launceston Tassie, and the cheapest standard parcel post available cost $6.60

She was not impressed

Then most of the time the parcel won’t actually be delivered to the address, but only a card left behind and the parcel still than has to be picked up from the local post office.


I am with you there. Anything that doesn't fit in a large envelope (A4 I believe) and is under 500g is charged at $6.60.

In Australia it's a case of - cheap, fast, reliable - pick two. Our land mass is too big, and population too small and sprawled.

The other issue that everyone glosses over (just in terms of competitive online retailers) is our labor costs are way high. Minimum wage is, what, $5 (?) in the states? In China, the average income is $6000 a year. Contrast that with Australia - guys working in a Coles warehouse in Australia can expect to earn between $25-40 p/hour on a forklift.

Countries with lower wages have the competitive advantage when selling globally. Economics 101.




What if the cost of putting a roof over your families head wasn't so obscene?

What if our dollar was US $0.55? All of a sudden the Coles Forky is on US$11 p/hr
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby il padrone » Fri Dec 28, 2012 1:41 pm

KonaCommuter wrote:What if our dollar was US $0.55? All of a sudden the Coles Forky is on US$11 p/hr

.....and buying bike gear on the net would suddenly be a lot less attractive :o
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby Xplora » Fri Dec 28, 2012 2:01 pm

KonaCommuter wrote:What if the cost of putting a roof over your families head wasn't so obscene?

What if our dollar was US $0.55? All of a sudden the Coles Forky is on US$11 p/hr

You won't see a return to 55c US for a LONG time, because the USA is working incredibly hard at making sure their dollar isn't a reserve currency in the long term.

The cost of housing is, IMO, part of the cost of being in the best country on the planet. The fact that people haven't had our politicians executed is largely a result of our high living standard. Housing is expensive because people will not say no to the cost of housing, and they clearly value the overall situation higher than you'd expect.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby boss » Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:26 pm

KonaCommuter wrote:
jimboss wrote:
greyhoundtom wrote:
The only item that I don’t agree with is the assertion that Australia has a well priced postage service, particularly when it comes to small parcels.

Case in point..... yesterday my wife posted a small scarf that weight very little to my daughter in Launceston Tassie, and the cheapest standard parcel post available cost $6.60

She was not impressed

Then most of the time the parcel won’t actually be delivered to the address, but only a card left behind and the parcel still than has to be picked up from the local post office.


I am with you there. Anything that doesn't fit in a large envelope (A4 I believe) and is under 500g is charged at $6.60.

In Australia it's a case of - cheap, fast, reliable - pick two. Our land mass is too big, and population too small and sprawled.

The other issue that everyone glosses over (just in terms of competitive online retailers) is our labor costs are way high. Minimum wage is, what, $5 (?) in the states? In China, the average income is $6000 a year. Contrast that with Australia - guys working in a Coles warehouse in Australia can expect to earn between $25-40 p/hour on a forklift.

Countries with lower wages have the competitive advantage when selling globally. Economics 101.




What if the cost of putting a roof over your families head wasn't so obscene?

What if our dollar was US $0.55? All of a sudden the Coles Forky is on US$11 p/hr


Wishful thinking. My housemate was on $28 for dayshift when the dollar was 70 cents for a greenback. That's in Adelaide, too, not a mining town.

If the proverbial ass were to fall out of the AUD tomorrow, to 55c as you suggest, the following would happen:

- the price of imports would increase (double)
- petrol and aviation fuel would increase (double)
- the price on any good that is delivered by air or road would increase (unknown multiplier effect)

What does that mean? Well families would get pushed to the brink. Less money to spend on luxury items, perhaps even more mortgage defaults.

That would suggest we'd be in recession territory.Real wages would definitely be falling, although not in the way you suggested. You'd still get your $30 an hour on the forklift, but you couldn't buy anywhere near as much with it. Inflation has given you a pay cut.

The last thing we want right now is a low dollar.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby il padrone » Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:51 pm

jimboss wrote:If the proverbial ass were to fall out of the AUD tomorrow, to 55c as you suggest, the following would happen:

- the price of imports would increase (double)
- petrol and aviation fuel would increase (double)
- the price on any good that is delivered by air or road would increase (unknown multiplier effect)

What does that mean? Well families would get pushed to the brink. Less money to spend on luxury items, perhaps even more mortgage defaults.

That would suggest we'd be in recession territory.Real wages would definitely be falling, although not in the way you suggested. You'd still get your $30 an hour on the forklift, but you couldn't buy anywhere near as much with it. Inflation has given you a pay cut.

Not really the correct veiwpoint on the overall economic impact:
RBA wrote: By making imports more expensive and exports cheaper, an exchange rate depreciation will tend to increase demand both for domestic import-competing goods and for exports. This would represent an expansionary impact on the economy at an aggregate level. So an exchange rate depreciation will tend to add to both inflation and economic activity and, conversely, an appreciation will tend to reduce prices and activity.

http://www.rba.gov.au/education/monetary-policy.html

The recent increases in the $A have been crushing to markets for Australian exports - from farmers to miners, tourism, education services just to name a few. In this process jobs have declined and incomes suffered.

jimboss wrote:The last thing we want right now is a low dollar.

However you are correct here, as one of the key economic objectives is the maintenance of the stability of the Australian currency. Small and/or gradual shifts in the $A are going to be less destabilising, a 50% fall in value is a HUGE jolt.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby boss » Fri Dec 28, 2012 5:03 pm

il padrone wrote:
jimboss wrote:If the proverbial ass were to fall out of the AUD tomorrow, to 55c as you suggest, the following would happen:

- the price of imports would increase (double)
- petrol and aviation fuel would increase (double)
- the price on any good that is delivered by air or road would increase (unknown multiplier effect)

What does that mean? Well families would get pushed to the brink. Less money to spend on luxury items, perhaps even more mortgage defaults.

That would suggest we'd be in recession territory.Real wages would definitely be falling, although not in the way you suggested. You'd still get your $30 an hour on the forklift, but you couldn't buy anywhere near as much with it. Inflation has given you a pay cut.

Not really the correct veiwpoint on the overall economic impact:
RBA wrote: By making imports more expensive and exports cheaper, an exchange rate depreciation will tend to increase demand both for domestic import-competing goods and for exports. This would represent an expansionary impact on the economy at an aggregate level. So an exchange rate depreciation will tend to add to both inflation and economic activity and, conversely, an appreciation will tend to reduce prices and activity.

http://www.rba.gov.au/education/monetary-policy.html

The recent increases in the $A have been crushing to markets for Australian exports - from farmers to miners, tourism, education services just to name a few. In this process jobs have declined and incomes suffered.

jimboss wrote:The last thing we want right now is a low dollar.

However you are correct here, as one of the key economic objectives is the maintenance of the stability of the Australian currency. Small and/or gradual shifts in the $A are going to be less destabilising, a 50% fall in value is a HUGE jolt.


The RBA is not talking a 50% cut in the exchange rate. I suspect in a perfect world they'd like it between 70-90c.

I stand by my comments - when we were previously at 50c, oil was much cheaper. Do that now, consequences will be dire.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby il padrone » Fri Dec 28, 2012 5:12 pm

No, I'd say that in a 'perfect world' the RBA would like the $A around about 103c. A sudden drop to 70-90c would still be a huge jolt to the economy with many destabilising impacts (including, but not limited to, fuel prices)
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby boss » Fri Dec 28, 2012 5:19 pm

You think?

I agree that an overnight drop would be bad times. But I imagine that the RBA crew wouldn't mind a few cents shaved off the dollar to stimulate local industry.

The reason I say that is they are running out of place to go with using monetary policy to stimulate the economy. Economic growth and a little inflation would give them somewhere to go with winding back rates a touch.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby birdbrain » Sat Dec 29, 2012 4:52 pm

jimboss wrote:
The reason I say that is they are running out of place to go with using monetary policy to stimulate the economy. Economic growth and a little inflation would give them somewhere to go with winding back rates a touch.


They have been farting around cutting interest rates and now they are the lowest they have been even when the GFC was in full swing. The dollar has hardly moved and inflation is'nt 2% or whatever they try to fool you with it's more like 10% if you include power prices, public transport fares, council and water rates, insurances, motor vehicle registration, health insurance premiums and a raft of other necessities. Do they seriously think inflation is 2% :? The best way this government could stimulate the economy would be to have an election because they are absolutely hopeless.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby il padrone » Sat Dec 29, 2012 5:13 pm

2%

Because lots and lots of other prices are going down, or have been static. Just have a look at the price of computer gear, of haircuts, of movie tickets and more, and more. So many of these routine items are barely too much more than what they were in the 80s. RBA takes a baset of typical household purchase items and prices them to get the CPI.

The basket includes:

RBA wrote:Fresh fruit and vegetables
Automotive fuel
Mortgage interest charges
Consumer credit charges
Public dwelling rents; Household fuel and light
Local government rates and charges
Postal and telephone services
Motoring charges; Urban transport fares
Health services and pharmaceuticals
Education and childcare
Meat and seafood
Tobacco and alcohol
Clothing
Holiday travel and accommodation
Other food
Other housing
Other household equipment and operation
Other transportation
Other personal care services
Other recreation and education


They weight each item according to its relative importance in a typical household budget. So yes - power charges, public transport, council rates, water, insurance and motor vehicle costs are all included in the calculation.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby boss » Sat Dec 29, 2012 5:50 pm

birdbrain wrote:
jimboss wrote:
The reason I say that is they are running out of place to go with using monetary policy to stimulate the economy. Economic growth and a little inflation would give them somewhere to go with winding back rates a touch.


They have been farting around cutting interest rates and now they are the lowest they have been even when the GFC was in full swing. The dollar has hardly moved and inflation is'nt 2% or whatever they try to fool you with it's more like 10% if you include power prices, public transport fares, council and water rates, insurances, motor vehicle registration, health insurance premiums and a raft of other necessities. Do they seriously think inflation is 2% :? The best way this government could stimulate the economy would be to have an election because they are absolutely hopeless.


Should I take that as a rant?

Without getting political, I'd suggest that both parties are as bad as each other. Perhaps even that the current liberal lineup are a bunch of politiking bozos. But hey, I'm not going to get political about it :?

il padrone wrote:2%

Because lots and lots of other prices are going down, or have been static. Just have a look at the price of computer gear, of haircuts, of movie tickets and more, and more. So many of these routine items are barely too much more than what they were in the 80s. RBA takes a baset of typical household purchase items and prices them to get the CPI.

The basket includes:

RBA wrote:Fresh fruit and vegetables
Automotive fuel
Mortgage interest charges
Consumer credit charges
Public dwelling rents; Household fuel and light
Local government rates and charges
Postal and telephone services
Motoring charges; Urban transport fares
Health services and pharmaceuticals
Education and childcare
Meat and seafood
Tobacco and alcohol
Clothing
Holiday travel and accommodation
Other food
Other housing
Other household equipment and operation
Other transportation
Other personal care services
Other recreation and education


They weight each item according to its relative importance in a typical household budget. So yes - power charges, public transport, council rates, water, insurance and motor vehicle costs are all included in the calculation.


This.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby gdt » Sat Dec 29, 2012 6:14 pm

il padrone wrote:RBA takes a baset of typical household purchase items and prices them to get the CPI.


It's the ABS which decide the basket, based on the Household Expenditure Survey.

Note carefully that the usual caveat about averages applies -- particular groups can have experiences which are greatly different from the average. In particular, there is a great deal of concern that the diminishing "social wage" of free government services has lead to substantial cost of living increases for the poor, increases which are not apparent from the CPI.

(ex-ABS employee)
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby skull » Sat Dec 29, 2012 6:24 pm

il padrone wrote:2%

Because lots and lots of other prices are going down, or have been static. Just have a look at the price of computer gear, of haircuts, of movie tickets and more, and more. So many of these routine items are barely too much more than what they were in the 80s. RBA takes a baset of typical household purchase items and prices them to get the CPI.

The basket includes:

RBA wrote:Fresh fruit and vegetables
Automotive fuel
Mortgage interest charges
Consumer credit charges
Public dwelling rents; Household fuel and light
Local government rates and charges
Postal and telephone services
Motoring charges; Urban transport fares
Health services and pharmaceuticals
Education and childcare
Meat and seafood
Tobacco and alcohol
Clothing
Holiday travel and accommodation
Other food
Other housing
Other household equipment and operation
Other transportation
Other personal care services
Other recreation and education


They weight each item according to its relative importance in a typical household budget. So yes - power charges, public transport, council rates, water, insurance and motor vehicle costs are all included in the calculation.


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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby il padrone » Sat Dec 29, 2012 6:40 pm

gdt wrote:It's the ABS which decide the basket, based on the Household Expenditure Survey.


Ooops! :oops: Yes, of course, the ABS does all the hard yards - data collection and calculations. RBA is just interpreting the economic impacts indicated by it.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby greyhoundtom » Sat Dec 29, 2012 7:48 pm

While the official inflation rate is supposed to be 2%, somehow or other after having existed on an age pension for the past four years, my wife and I have now reached the conclusion that we can no longer survive on our current income and keep living in our house in outer suburbia.

Primarily due to the increased costs of basic services, such as rates, gas and electricity. Not to mention the cost of fuel, communication services and insurance.

While the property and location has much to recommend it, it is still only a modest 3 bedroom home that in today’s market would probably be worth around $380,000.

We are now faced with trying to find a yet cheaper property, so that the money realised from the swap over could be used to supplement the pension, and hopefully get us a further ten years down the road.

We have lived here for 22 years and during that time have established a group of local friends, and are comfortable with our long-standing GP and the available shopping and hospital services.

An extremely daunting task particularly when 70 years of age is not all that far away.

Yes we have looked at all the available options such as a range of retirement villages, and even the reverse mortgage system, and have found all those options unsatisfactory.

Am I dirty on the carbon tax and the general economic management of the current government? .......... you better believe it.

Is the inflation rate 2%? ............. Not as far as we are concerned.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby boss » Sat Dec 29, 2012 8:31 pm

Edit: decided my pot was too harsh. General theme was that GHT shouldn't blame the current govt's economic management for his own poor choices in saving for his own retirement. Also mentioned that as I'm inheriting the world GHT's generation has created (read: flying bicycles up) a carbon tax is the least he should be paying - perhaps consider a 'you guys ruined the world so now you should pay up' tax.


It's also worth noting that inflation was worse under the previous government, say what you want about its accuracy, it used the same methodology, so inflation was worse then than it is now.
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Re: Online tax to recover GST

Postby greyhoundtom » Sat Dec 29, 2012 9:25 pm

mea culpa, mea culpa, mea máxima culpa. :roll:
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