Monday, October 30, 2023

Reducing Gas and Electricity Bills

Today I received new format gas and electricity bills from ACTEWAGL which include a notice on the front page that we can reduce our bills by a total of AUD 558 per year by switching to the Direct Saver Plan. I am now doing that. This seems to just be straight up price discrimination, like the higher mortgage rates I used to pay.

Friday, October 27, 2023

Second Australian Unity Merger Plan Scuttled

Australian Unity and Cromwell announce that their fund merger plan is cancelled. I wasn't very enthusiastic about the merger and so am happy it has been called off. Cromwell's fund only included offices, so while the deal was diversifying for Cromwell unitholders it was not so for Australian Unity unitholders. I invested in the fund to get diversified property exposure, not just offices.

Saturday, October 21, 2023

Moominmama's Taxes 2022-23

I also did Moominmama's taxes for this financial year. The post about last year's taxes is here. Here is a summary of her tax return for this year:

Her salary was up only 3% this year. Gross income was down 2%, though there were some big fluctuations across categories. Australian dividends rose quite strongly, which is something of a trend...

Total deductions rose by 46%, mainly because of increased interest costs. As a result, net income fell 27%. 

Gross tax applies the tax bracket rates to taxable income. This was more than offset by franking credits. So, she gets the franking credits refunded as cash and has a negative tax rate. As a result, she should get a large refund.

Moominpapa's 2022-23 Taxes

This year, I've prepared our tax returns just before the deadline. Here is a summary of my taxes. Last year's taxes are here. To make things clearer, I reclassify a few items compared to the actual tax form. Of course, everything is in Australian Dollars. 

Overall, gross income and deductions barely changed from last year, falling by 1% each.

On the income side, Australian dividends and franked distributions from managed funds are again up strongly. My salary still dominates my income sources but again only increased by 3%. 

Other income sources are down strongly, partly because I shifted the assets, which produced these returns into the SMSF. Net capital gain is zero due mainly to some strategic sales to generate losses. I am carrying forward $93k in capital losses.

Deductions fell 47% because last year they included the loss on Virgin Australia bonds. I redistributed deductions a bit to match the size of different holdings. This resulted in some big changes in the individual categories. Didn't plan on charity falling that much...

Gross tax is computed by applying the rates in the tax table to the net income. In Australia, you don't enter the tax due in your tax return, but I like to compute it so that I know how big or small my refund will be.

Franking credits (from Australian dividends), foreign tax paid, and the Early Stage Venture Capital (ESVCLP) offset are all deducted from gross tax to arrive at the tax assessment. 

Estimated assessed tax fell because of the larger offsets this year.

I estimate that I will pay 25% of net income in tax. Tax was withheld on my salary at an average rate of 32%. I already paid $7,782 in tax installments and so estimate that I should get a refund of $8,701.

Monday, October 02, 2023

Good News from Pershing Square

The SEC finally approved the registration of Pershing Square SPARC Holdings. I bought PErshing Square Tontine Holdings (PSTH) around $23. We got $20 back when the SPAC was wound up. It's great to see that it will now be resurrected. Hopefully some good deal will come out of this. I wasn't that inspired by the Universal Music deal, which fell through, anyway. We ended up being invested in that all the same through PSH.L.