Wednesday, 24 February 2016
Questions without Notice
Australians' confidence rebound in January, despite all of that. But Australians have their investments and they have their wealth in their homes, and confidence in the value of your home is central to Australian consumer confidence. That is why it is so important that you have policies that are consistent and stable to promote consumer confidence in the value of the home, in the importance and value of having a job—which is what this government is focused on: jobs, growth and confidence, and we are seeing all three as a result of the policies of this government.
It is true that negative gearing has been part of the mainstay of policy in this country for a hundred years. It is not unique to Australia and it does not provide any special treatment. It simply respects the principle, as the former Secretary to the Department of the Treasury, Ted Evans, was saying of the principle that if you are seeking to earn an income then the costs of earning that income can be offset. This is an important taxation principle. It is not a concession. It is not something that is somehow a special incentive. It is just the simple, plain facts of how our tax system works.
What those opposite want to do is trash 100 years of good tax practice and throw that out the window to engage in the politics of envy. What they do not understand is ordinary Australians, mums and dads, are the ones who invest in negative gearing. Two-thirds of those who engage in negative gearing have a taxable income of $80,000 or less.
Ms Plibersek interjecting—