The big bank today became the latest corporate giant to have its profit presented as if the full tax reduction package was in force.
And that would mean a $12.195 billion reduction over the decade from 2026-27, according to an analysis by the Australia Institute.
The institute wants to use the results presented during the corporate reporting period to highlight what it sees as the scope of the tax package, and the royal commission into financial services has made banks a prime target.
The government will renew attempts next week to get the crossbench votes needed in the Senate to pass its business tax relief package in the face of firm Labor and Greens rejection. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull insists he has a mandate for the overhaul from the 2016 election.
Influential Justice Party senator Derryn Hinch has made clear the proposed cuts should be limited to companies with revenues lower than $500 million a year, and not for what he calls “robber banks”.
“I know that some of the senior ministers are starting to soften,” Senator Hinch told Sky News yesterday.
“They’re spooked by this, they know it’s not popular.”
However, Treasurer Scott Morrison and Finance Minister Mathias Cormann will resume negotiations in the upper house when Parliament returns on Monday. Just four of the 10 crossbenchers support the full policy, and the government needs the votes of at least eight.
“The politics is difficult. It’s always difficult to do these things but the economics is right,” Mr Morrison told Melbourne’s 3AW radio.
The Australia Institute project, named Revenue Watch, will be repeated for every big business financial report, and began with mining giant Rio Tinto and its half-year report released last week.
The institute’s analysis found company tax cuts would be worth $7.67 billion in lost revenue over first decade of the policy.
The full range of big business cuts would operate from 2026-27.
Today it turned its attention to the Commonwealth Bank’s 2017-18 profit of $13.4 billion.
The institute also has presented a calculation of what it calls the “gift” ordinary taxpayers would be making to the bank, based on the estimated number of taxpayers.
Whatever the fiscal fortunes of the Commonwealth Bank, its chief executive has done well.
CEO remuneration increased from $2,198,649 in 2016-17 to $2,959,287 in 2017-18 — a 35 per cent boost.
The current CEO is Matt Comyn, who took over from Ian Narev in April.