Monday, March 24, 2008

Wealth Much More Evenly Distributed in Australia

Wealth appears to be much more evenly distributed in Australia than the US. The lowest 10% of households have a median net worth of $A175k, which is greater than the US median for all households (around $US100k). I think the Australian figures include cars and household effects which pushes the numbers up a little. One important factor is probably compulsory superannuation - employers must contribute at least 9% of salary towards a retirement account and cashing those accounts out before age 60 or so is near impossible. The median for all households is $A340k and for the top 10% $A975k. This probably places us ($A470k) a little lower in the continuum than we would be in the U.S. According to recent taxation data we live in the 8th richest (out of 26 in terms of income) district of the Australian Capital Territory. About where we fall in the national net worth spectrum too.

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