Economic Policy

The Centre for Independent Studies is guided by the philosophy of free markets and individual responsibility. Our economic policy research centres on ideas that will strengthen Australia’s economy for the future and challenge the reach of big government. With ongoing uncertainty for economies around the world, the CIS’ research into financial and monetary issues is more vital than ever in helping shape public policy.

Continuing economic reform is desperately needed in Australia, and that is why our TARGET30 program seeks to reduce waste in government and in the public sector, and to bring government spending under control.

For more information on our economic research, please proceed to:

Featured Publication


Principles and recommendations for tax reform - CIS submission National Reform Summit
Simon Cowan, Robert Carling, Henry Ergas
27 August 2015 | The Centre for Independent Studies

The slant towards cutting taxes before 2010 was welcome, but for such an approach to return in the foreseeable future, the growth of government spending will have to be curbed and the size of government as a share of GDP reduced. Although tax reform may…

The Case for a New Australian Settlement: Ruminations of an Inveterate Economist
Wolfgang Kasper
26 June 2015 | OP141

Australia needs a cultural counter-revolution that appeals to the traditional Australian spirit of self-reliance and can-do optimism – a new ‘Australian settlement’ which goes beyond mere economic policy. It should be underpinned by agreed basic understandings across political and social divides: (i) ours is a…

Submission to the Financial System Inquiry Final Report
Patrick Carvalho
03 May 2015

Submission to the Financial System Inquiry Final Report    

Towards a more competitive Medicare: The case for deregulating medical fees and co-payments in Australia
David Gadiel
03 May 2015 | Research Report 1

GPs have been willing to bulk bill for over 80% of GP consultations, but where local conditions permit, they are comfortable to charge patients what the market will bear. Specialists have generally opposed bulk billing, except (in some instances) for Concession card holders. It is…

Right or Rort? Dissecting Australia’s Tax Concessions
Robert Carling
03 May 2015 | Research Report 2

While action is needed to correct structural budget deficits, the criticism of tax concessions has lost sight of the legitimate reasons for many of them, and often overestimates the revenue gain. On the whole, the so-called concessions for capital gains tax, negative gearing, superannuation, dividend…

Media & Commentary

Two cheers for Treasurer
Michael Potter
28 August 2015

On Monday, the Treasurer, Joe Hockey, made a speech arguing that personal taxes should be cut, particularly to address bracket creep (when taxpayers pay a greater proportion of their income…

National Reform Summit good, bad and ugly
Simon Cowan
28 August 2015

On Wednesday, KPMG hosted Australia’s opinion leaders at the National Reform Summit. Trade unions, business leaders, community and interest groups, even the odd think tank researcher, sat down for the…

A GST increase - taking the easy way out
Michael Potter
28 August 2015 | SBS

As a result of the National Reform Summit, there has been increasing support for a rise in the GST to fund a company tax cut. There is much to be…

Tax cuts are good for government
Robert Carling
27 August 2015 | Daily Telegraph

THE crux of Treasurer Joe Hockey’s tax reform speech this week was spot on. In his words, our tax system is holding us back from reaching our end goal of…

Bracket creep reform: What are you waiting for, Hockey?
Michael Potter
25 August 2015 | ABC The Drum

Mr Hockey rightly argues bracket creep is a stealth tax increase. Addressing the problem of stealth income tax increases is crucial for a Government wishing to focus on jobs and…