Wednesday, April 18

Company tax revenue

According to today's Australian, the Treasury has launched an investigation into why it has been overestimating company tax revenue, with forecasts of the government's tax shortfall rising ahead of next month's budget.

So let's have a look at the data. Every month the Department of Finance and Deregulation reports on Budget progress. The most recent release included February's figures. Dropping those February figures into my regular graphs (using table e01a from the RBA, which had the figures to January 2012) we get the following. As you can see, company tax revenue is still below the 2008 peak in nominal terms. We also have a minor hiccup in the February result.

This can be compared with individual income tax revenues. This revenue stream did not decline as much following the GFC and is now well above the pre-GFC peak.

Unsurprisingly, given the automatic stabilizers and the need for stimulus, expenses have risen over the same period. 

When you add other revenues into the mix (not charted above) it yields an operating result along the following lines. Of note, the last two data points don't look that healthy.

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