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26 June 2014

Fewer Australians are giving to charity but those who do are giving more, a QUT analysis of Australian Taxation Office statistics has revealed.

  • Australians gave $2.24 billion in 2011-2012 in tax deductible gifts ($30 million up on previous year)
  • Queensland was third behind NSW and Victoria with $311.81 million (down from $332m) in total gifts
  • Residents in Toowoomba's 4350 postcode gave the most overall in the state ($7.29m) and the highest average gifts ($4,192) were from St Lucia's 4067
  • Find out how much your suburb and occupation give here
  • 33.27 per cent of Queenslanders claimed charitable tax-deductions
  • Average Queensland donation was $366.71 (national average $494.25)
  • Women give a higher proportion of their income than men
  • WA postcode 6011 (Cottesloe) topped the country giving $43.7 million
  • Ministers of religion gave the highest proportion of their taxable income at 2.19 per cent
  • Nearly three quarters of police gave a gift, the highest proportion of any occupation
  • The number of Australian taxpayers giving fell from 4.79 million (or 37.93 per cent of the taxpaying population) to 4.54 million (or 35.62 per cent)
  • The average percentage of income given fell to 0.33 per cent
  • Donations have not yet recovered after 2007 crash, the same as in the UK and USA

The annual Giving Australia report produced by QUT's Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies (ACPNS), analysed Australian Taxation Office statistics on tax-deductible giving for 2011/12.

A third of Queensland taxpayers claimed charitable tax-deductions totalling $311.81 million - the third highest total among the states and territories.

But Sunshine State givers on average donated a lower percentage of their salaries than those in other states. Queensland taxpayers donated an average of 0.24 per cent of their taxable incomes, compared to ACT taxpayers (0.40 per cent), New South Wales (0.39 per cent) and Victoria (0.38 per cent).The national average was 0.33 per cent.

The state's most generous postcode by total amount given was 4350 - which includes Toowoomba - and recorded $7.29 million in gifts. St Lucia (postcode 4067), in Brisbane's southwest, was second for total amount and first in the state for the average gift ($4,192).

NSW had the most givers, with 1.45 million claiming charitable tax-deductible donations worth $839.56 million - 37.45 per cent of the national total.

NSW also claimed the highest average donation in the country of $575.11, compared to the national average of $494.25 and more than $200 more than the Queensland average donation of $366.71.

The national average has nearly trebled in the last decade.

ACPNS director Professor Myles McGregor-Lowndes said there had been a shift in which areas in each state could claim the title of the biggest giving postcode.

"There has been a change in the biggest giving postcodes with Hawksburn and Toorak replacing South Yarra in Victoria, the Gold Coast being replaced by Toowoomba in Queensland, and Dover Heights, HMAS Watson, Rose Bay North, Vaucluse and Watsons Bay replacing Manly and Manly East in NSW," he said.

"But the big shake up is that Cottesloe in WA takes the prize with the highest total gifts claimed in the country of $43.7 million and the highest average gift of $19,587,77.

"Interestingly this is the first time this honour has shifted from the eastern seaboard to the West."

The figures revealed more Australian taxpaying women (2.27 million or 37.21 per cent) made and claimed tax-deductible donations than Australian taxpaying men (2.26 million or 34.16 per cent).

Women also gave a higher proportion of their salary, 0.37 per cent compared to 0.31 per cent for men.

Ministers of religion were top when it came to the highest deductible gift to taxable income ratio (2.19 per cent), followed by Financial Investment Consultants (1.26 per cent) and Chief Executives and Managing Directors (1.1 per cent). Media professionals were 10th on the list (0.64 per cent).

The occupations with the highest percentage of donating taxpayers were Police (72.4 per cent), School Principals (67.8 per cent) and Policy and Planning Managers (66.23 per cent).

A copy of the ACPNS Giving Australia report, containing analysis of tax-deductible giving by postcode, gender, state and occupation, is available here

Media contact:
Rob Kidd, QUT Media, 07 3138 1841, rj.kidd@qut.edu.au
After hours, Niki Widdowson, 0407 585 901

Professor Myles McGregor-Lowndes found fewer Australians were giving to charity but those who do give more.

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