Many of the 2.5 million Australian retirees on the age pension would like to work, but only a fraction do – partly because it can mean losing some of their pension.
Depending on circumstances, it may be time to re-think the bias to paying down housing debt over wealth accumulation in super. At least to do the sums, so you can make an informed choice.
The government’s retirement incomes review should concentrate on boosting rent assistance and Newstart and fixing the pension assets test. These would achieve more than boosting super.
All that would be needed is to adjust retiree tax scales and tax their super fund earnings at their marginal rate.
Super is inefficient, costly and directs money where it isn’t needed. There’s a way out.
No single super contribution rate suits everyone, and there’s only a clear case for an increase if there’s no age pension.
Retires who don’t own their homes do awfully out of the pension. Here’s a way to rebalance it.
Newstart increases are projected to get smaller and smaller relative to pension increases. By the end of the century Newstart will be just two fifths of the pension.
Often misunderstood, deeming rates are back broadly where they should be.
It’s a good idea to deem income, but of late we’ve doing it badly.
47% of Australians aged 55-64 have mortgage debt, up from 14% in 1990.
The promised surpluses won’t last unless we stop giving older Australians more and more and asking them to pay less and less.
Budgets will increasingly acknowledge that welfare is about us, rather than us versus them.
The Conversation played host to really important new ideas in 2018. Some will take years to develop. Others will never come to fruition. But they’re important.
A new ANU computer algorithm can provide near instant answers about how to get the best bang for welfare dollars. It says we should boost Newstart and cut either pensions or family benefits.
Bill Shorten says Labor’s plan to make super contributions on behalf of women on paid parental leave would have a “big impact”. We find its impact would be be minuscule.
The pension age won’t climb to 70 after all. What was it all about?
Increasingly insecure pathways to home ownership are not just a problem for property markets. The fallout is likely to hit retirement incomes, the welfare base, gender equity and the broader economy.
Retirees are often urged to downsize to free up suburban properties for the next generation and for higher-density development. What’s being ignored is the costs of moving into a unit or apartment.
Any significant decline in home ownership or equity in a home impacts higher care needs: older people will not have an asset to sell to fund the bonds required to enter aged care accommodation.