The aim of the research at the CIS is to work towards an efficient and predictable tax system that does not impose too great a burden on the economy.


Cutting income tax: can we add the bacon to the hamburger and milkshake tax cuts?
Robert Carling
15 April 2018 | PP1

The key problems in personal income tax are excessive marginal rates and an increasing overall average tax rate as bracket creep goes unchecked. Political objectives aside, there is a sound economic case for tax cuts. The government should give priority to instituting a system of…

Red tape and Australia’s economic malaise
Michael Potter
07 February 2018 | OP164

Australia is in a period of economic malaise. GDP per person has been growing slowly ever since the GFC. Australia’s performance is mediocre compared to other developed countries; by contrast, we outperformed before the GFC. Household incomes and wages are also growing at slow rates,…

From Reform to Retreat: 30 Years of Australian Fiscal Policy
Robert Carling
10 December 2017 | OP161

Australia entered an era of economic reform in the mid-1980s as policymakers resolved to liberalise the country’s economy and strengthen its public finances. Fiscal reform, which is the subject of this paper, was an important part of the process. These reforms included management of the…

UBI – Universal Basic Income is an Unbelievably Bad Idea
Simon Cowan
05 November 2017 | RR32

The idea of a Universal Basic Income (UBI), paid by the government to its citizens with few restrictions, has been around for a long time. One of the main justifications for introducing a UBI is the impending changes to the labour market as a result…

The Major Bank Levy: We’re all going to be hit
Michael Potter
19 June 2017 | RR29

The major bank levy was proposed in the 2017–18 Budget. The levy has numerous flaws including: The costs of the levy will likely be passed on as higher interest rates for mortgages and business loans, harming households and business investment which is very weak. The…

Media & Commentary

The tax cut menu
Robert Carling
20 April 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

With the Turnbull government raising expectations of personal income tax cuts in the forthcoming budget, the question is whether it can deliver a cut that does not disappoint in both…

Tax by stealth – the art of plucking the golden goose
Matthew O’Donnell
20 April 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

The art of taxation consists of plucking the goose so as to obtain the most feathers with the least hissing. — Jean-Baptiste Colbert Congratulations Australia, the tax collector has just…

New CIS research: The three priorities for cutting income tax
Robert Carling
15 April 2018 | MEDIA RELEASE

The government should deliver income tax relief in the Budget, but it’s not clear they can afford to make real cuts, according to the latest research from the Centre for…

Sugar tax: ‘Do Something’ Economics 101
Matthew O’Donnell
13 April 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

The UK’s recent implementation of a sugar tax has reignited the push for an Australian sugar tax, pointing to ‘science’. Often, our scientific and political elites really have no idea…

Tax Freedom Day is April 16: five days more tax burden than 2017  
Matthew O’Donnell
13 April 2018 | MEDIA RELEASE

Pop the champagne corks and break out the Tim Tams, Australia. Monday is Tax Freedom Day. April 16 marks the date for 2018 on which Australians have paid their dues…