Deductions Miscellaneous 2016

Tax literacy in Australia: Not knowing your deduction from your offset

Source: Australian Tax Forum Journal Article

Published Date: 1 Jul 2016


In times of global economic uncertainty and in a climate of increased consumer responsibility for financial decisions, maintaining a financial environment where consumers are protected from risk and continue to have opportunities to create wealth should be critical for governments, business and administrators. The Australian Government has recognised that, for those with the lowest levels of financial literacy, specific financial literacy programs can equip them with the appropriate financial skills and knowledge to ensure they can make well informed decisions and be less vulnerable to scams and market risks.

One of the main aims of increasing the overall financial literacy of populations is creating an environment where consumers have the knowledge, skills and confidence to protect them from financial risk. It is argued that taxation consequences often play an important role in investment decisions and are often the primary reason why people seek assistance and advice from professionals. It is also argued that making poor taxation decisions through a lack of basic understanding can pose significant risks to a person's overall financial position and financial decision?making. Indeed, Chardon has argued that the notion of financial capability should include notions of tax and superannuation. However, to what extent do Australians understand basic tax concepts, that is - what is their tax literacy?

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Deductions Miscellaneous 2016

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