The median income in Australia is $48,360 before tax

Discussion in 'Living Room' started by Terry_w, 30th Dec, 2019.

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  1. Terry_w

    Terry_w Lawyer, Tax Adviser and Mortgage broker in Sydney Business Plus Member

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  2. hammer

    hammer Well-Known Member

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    That's miles lower than what I was expecting too...

    How on earth do you survive or buy a property on that kind of money?
     
  3. Phar Lap

    Phar Lap Well-Known Member

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    I presume thats one person, not household income.
    So easy to survive AND buy property if more than 1 income. just depends where.
     
  4. Beano

    Beano Well-Known Member

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    Need to do a sample of the PC investors ...that will be a lot higher ! :)
     
  5. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    Although lots of people are single - and not just those under 35.

    I recommend the full article - definitely worth reading.
     
  6. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    I have to ask "what is a median type worker?" & why has median income dropped from the previous $56k? Is this a direct result of the casualisation of the workforce?
     
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  7. lettert

    lettert Well-Known Member

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    Story mentions people on the pension, so I'm assuming they also include people on the dole? Would love to see what types of income they include.
    Also, the people interviewed seem to live in regional areas, where you'd expect costs to be much lower. I'm guessing the median in metro areas is different.

    edit - reread incase i was missing something: "She is now dependent on the single pension, which is $466.70 per week." Hmm.

    edit again: clicked on the link to 6524.0.55.002 - Personal Income in Australia, 2011-12 to 2016-17
    So this seems to be their source of info, but perhaps to add "human interest" they interviewed some people like the pension lady's story I quoted. Maybe the article has some discrepancies which wouldn't be surprising.
     
    Last edited: 30th Dec, 2019
  8. Terry_w

    Terry_w Lawyer, Tax Adviser and Mortgage broker in Sydney Business Plus Member

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    Seems like they have only included tax return lodgers

    During 2016-17:

    • the Total personal income for the 13.7 million persons who submitted a tax return was $856.2 billion
    • median income was $48,360, an increase of 1.4 per cent on the previous year
    • median income increased by 12.5 per cent, from 2011-12
    • Employee income is the highest contributor to Total personal income at 87.2 per cent (down from 87.6 per cent in the previous year)
     
  9. 2FAST4U

    2FAST4U Well-Known Member

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    The Grattan Institute found similar findings earlier this year.

    How much does the typical Australian earn? The answer might surprise you

    upload_2019-12-30_15-4-41.png

    upload_2019-12-30_15-5-39.png

    "But it may surprise you to know that just 3.1 per cent of Australian taxpayers had taxable incomes that high in 2016-17, the latest year for which figures are available. Only another 14.9 per cent had taxable incomes exceeding $80,000 a year. So a taxpayer with an income of $80,000 a year is therefore in the top 20 per cent of Australians".

    These studies probably underestimate true earnings as they are based off taxable income. There are a lot of accessible middle class deductions for PAYG workers E.g. concessional super contributions up to 25k per year, negative gearing, salary sacrifice etc. Business owners have a raft of deductions available and do everything possible to minimise their taxable income.
     
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  10. ChrisP73

    ChrisP73 Well-Known Member

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    ATO: Your taxable income is the income you have to pay tax on. It is the term used for the amount left after you have deducted all the expenses you are allowed to claim from your assessable income.

    Assessable income − allowable deductions = taxable income

    Also pretty sure that doesn't include family tax benefits - at least not all.
     
  11. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    yeah I thought i had read multiple times the median was $67kish
     
  12. Terry_w

    Terry_w Lawyer, Tax Adviser and Mortgage broker in Sydney Business Plus Member

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    Here is something on the average incomes:

    The average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults in Australia in May 2019 was $1,634 (trend), according to new Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures released today. (Aug 19)

    6302.0 - Average Weekly Earnings, Australia, May 2019
     
  13. Indifference

    Indifference Well-Known Member

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    All the numbers are correct because it depends what sample population they are referring to. For instance:
    1. Total population (every single person)
    2. Taxpayer population (everyone that lodged or should have lodged a tax return)
    3. Full-time working adults
    4. All working adults both full time & part time
    Etc....

    Every sample population will result in a different outcome as they rely on the same earnings & tax withheld data set, which will also be censored to correlate to the population being considered.... capiche?

    FWIW, if you look into the data you’d find all sorts of anomalies like business owners who appear to earn 20k but in reality are making millions... this also skews the consumption of the statistics from the data as it can be a tad misleading when compared to the reality, both collective & individual.

    The other issue is that it isn’t really appropriate to make individual comparison to such broad collective data statistics due to the large number of variables.... ie. full time vs part time, male vs female, geographical location, occupation/profession, employment type (Ie. employee vs business owner) etc etc etc...
     
    Last edited: 31st Dec, 2019
  14. Indifference

    Indifference Well-Known Member

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    This is a perfect example of why the stats can seem skewed or not representative... that link excludes ALL of the following:

    SCOPE AND COVERAGE

    4 All wage and salary earners who received pay for the reference period are represented in the AWE survey, except:

    • members of the Australian permanent defence forces;
    • employees of enterprises primarily engaged in agriculture, forestry and fishing;
    • employees of private households;
    • employees of overseas embassies, consulates, etc.;
    • employees based outside Australia; and
    • employees on workers' compensation who are not paid through the payroll.

    5 Also excluded are the following persons who are not regarded as employees for the purposes of this survey:
    • casual employees who did not receive pay during the reference period;
    • employees on leave without pay who did not receive pay during the reference period;
    • employees on strike, or stood down, who did not receive pay during the reference period;
    • directors who are not paid a salary;
    • proprietors/partners of unincorporated businesses;
    • self-employed persons such as subcontractors, owner/drivers, consultants;
    • persons paid solely by commission without a retainer; and
    • employees paid under the Australian Government's Paid Parental Leave Scheme.
     
  15. Graeme

    Graeme Well-Known Member

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    Also bear in mind that there are different ways of calculating an average income.

    The median is the middle value if you ordered everyone's income. The mean, which is what we typically take as being an average, involves adding everyone's earnings then dividing it by the number of people.

    The trouble with the mean is that it can be skewed upwards by high earners, which is why statistics often use the median.

    My guess is that the ABS figures use the mean, which will inflate the figure slightly, along with ignoring part time workers, who'll earn less.
     
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  16. shorty

    shorty Well-Known Member

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    They seem like pretty reasonable exclusions.
     
  17. Indifference

    Indifference Well-Known Member

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    Really?

    Excluding ADF Defence, Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing, Self employed (ie. small business owners including trades) & many others, is not that representative for many communities in Australia...
     
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  18. Indifference

    Indifference Well-Known Member

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    Actually you will find both stats published with Median stats clearly stated as such.

    You’ll also see that they use the Jackknife method for Average/Mean (as it estimates the variance & bias) and the Woodruff method for Median (estimates variance).

    I also dislike using the mean/average as it often does not represent what most people think it does due to a lot of data sets being non-symmetrical. Ie. not a Normal or Gaussian Distribution.
    A quick data bias check is to compare the Mean & Median values to determine the bias direction & variance. Ie. If both values are very close relative to the data range, then the Normal Distribution is a reasonable approximation and the Mean can be considered “Average”. If not, then yeah, use Median.
     
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