taxing time survey

financial indicator series

$2,344 - the average tax return expected for 2010

07 June 2010

The average tax refund is expected to fall 13 percent to $2,344 this financial year, with almost half of Australia's 13 million taxpayers planning to use their windfall to pay off or reduce their personal debt.

The latest report in the Bankwest Social Indicator Series - "Taxing Time" - also shows 42 percent of Australians expect to receive a refund of less than $1,000 this year, while five percent expect to receive nothing.

The report has also found more than one in 10 taxpayers use their tax refund as a form of enforced savings.

But not everyone is looking forward to the end of the financial year, with one in ten taxpayers likely to end up owing the Federal Government money this year.

Of those who are expecting a refund, one in three are planning on saving the money. In contrast to their "spend now pay later" image, half of all Gen Ys (52 percent) plan on saving their tax return, compared to only a quarter of Gen X.

Australian Tax Office figures shows 12.6 million people lodged income tax returns in the 2007-2008 financial year, an increase of 841,536 from the previous year.

Bankwest Retail Chief Executive, Vittoria Shortt, said the Taxing Time survey shows just how prudent Australians have become.

"People are being far more cautious with their returns than in previous years and using their refund to save or reduce debt," she said.

Download a copy of the media release and a breakdown on each state below:

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