Government fiscal support in June quarter 2022 targeted the rising cost of living and inflationary pressures faced by households and businesses. Funding for healthcare and assistance for those affected by floods in Queensland and New South Wales also continued.
Annual Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) increased to 6.1 per cent in the June quarter, due to higher dwelling construction costs and automotive fuel prices (a). The average wholesale electricity price for all regions reached a record-high (b), and weather impacts and transport costs drove food prices higher. In response, the Commonwealth government halved the fuel excise from 44.2 cents to 22.1 cents per litre and implemented a $250 Cost of Living Payment to eligible income support recipients.
- Consumer Price Index, Australia, Key statistics, June 2022
- Australian Energy Regulator, Quarterly spot prices, Q2 2022
The record-high wholesale electricity prices increased revenues for Public Non-Financial Corporation (PNFC) electricity generators, however higher input costs for coal and gas increased PNFC expenses.
The Reserve Bank of Australia raised the cash rate target by a total of 75 basis points in the quarter to 0.85%. Interest revenues and expenses of all levels of government increased. Cost of living pressures and higher interest rates impacted the property market. Stamp duty on conveyances revenue fell in most jurisdictions, as the estimated number of sale settlements and capital city dwellings values declined (c).
- CoreLogic Monthly Housing Chart Pack, July 2022
Healthcare spending for hospitalisations, testing, vaccinations, and distribution of rapid antigen tests (RATs) continued, albeit at a lower level than March quarter 2022. Other COVID-19 response spending such as business support programs decreased.
While severe flooding events in Queensland and New South Wales continued in the June quarter, flooding was not as widespread as the March quarter. Consequently, government disaster recovery payments and other support from the Commonwealth decreased.
Taxation revenue rose in most jurisdictions due to strong company profits in the resources sector, low unemployment, and reduced impacts from COVID-19 restrictions and weather events. The main contributors to the rise were:
- company income tax, personal income tax and goods and services tax for the Commonwealth
- payroll tax, motor vehicle taxes, and gambling taxes for states and territories