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February 2024 E News

As we step into the second month of the year, we extend our warmest greetings and sincere appreciation for entrusting us with your financial matters. In this edition of our newsletter, we aim to keep you informed, inspired, and empowered on your financial journey.

February brings with it a sense of renewal and momentum, prompting us to reflect on the successes and challenges of the past while charting a course for the future. As your dedicated accounting partners, we are committed to providing you with valuable insights, practical advice, and updates on the latest developments in the financial landscape.

In this issue, we delve into key topics ranging from cash flow management, tax deductions, and preparation and financial planning strategies to industry trends and regulatory updates. Our goal is to equip you with the knowledge and tools necessary to make informed decisions and achieve your financial objectives.

In this month's market update, our Financial Expert, Tony Marshall reintroduces the term "the "Magnificent Seven," comprising Nvidia, Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, Alphabet (Google's parent company), Apple, and Tesla, valued at $13.2 trillion, or 29% of the S&P 500. Nvidia's AI technology fueled a surge in April/May, influencing the market significantly; removing these stocks from the index drops returns from 35% to 13% (in US dollars). As we enter 2024, the question looms: can these companies sustain their share prices, or are investors driven by FOMO? The upcoming US reporting season will scrutinize. Recent developments in January and February show cracks, with three of the seven stocks falling from their peaks.

As FBT time approaches, it's vital to act promptly. Determine your FBT liability for fringe benefits provided between April 1, 2023, and March 31, 2024, and lodge your FBT return by May 21 if necessary. Notify the ATO if you're registered for FBT but don't need to lodge. Consider using existing records for fringe benefits starting April 1. The ATO has released a new guideline for calculating the cost of charging electric vehicles at employees' homes for FBT purposes, offering a choice between a fixed rate or actual cost. Stay informed to avoid FBT liabilities.

Did you know about the Bonus tax deduction for small businesses accessing external training for their employees? This initiative offers small businesses a valuable tax deduction to support training initiatives for both new and existing staff. Eligible businesses can benefit from an additional 20% tax deduction for external training courses conducted by registered training providers. This deduction applies to expenditures incurred between 7:30 pm AEDT on March 29, 2022, and June 30, 2024. 

There is a free webinar on Thursday, 21st March, from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM AEDT. Join Court Sayer-Roberts, a seasoned small business financial counselor with over 20 years of management experience in New Zealand and Australia. Gain essential insights on effective cash flow management for NSW business owners. Learn why cash is crucial for small business success and how frequent review of financial reports correlates with business prosperity. Don't miss the importance of detailed cash flow forecasting for informed decision-making and long-term resilience. 

The Northern Rivers holds regular Community Events.  See what's on and keep up to date on all the fantastic opportunities available and help to support local.  There is plenty to do.

A reminder, there are some important lodgement dates to note this month.

The WD Nicholls Team

Last month you will recall I mentioned the Magnificent Seven.  What is this term?  They are a group of very large technology stocks which are Nvida, Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, Alphabet (Google parent company), Apple and Tesla.  These stocks have a combined value of $13.2 trillion dollars which is 29% of the S&P 500 (US sharemarket).  We mentioned in April/May Nvidia announced a large increase in sales due to AI technology and since then these 7 stocks have soared on the back of this:

With this large increase in values you can easily gather the performance of the US sharemarket has been as a result of these 7 stocks.  If you remove the 7 from the index return reduces from 35% to 13% (US dollars).  Going into 2024 the question is can these companies maintain or even increase their share prices or have investors got carried away with FOMO (fear of missing out) causing them to be expensive?  Time will tell and as we roll into the next reporting season in the US (April to June) investors'/analysts' eyes will be focused on these 7 companies.  Moving to January and February, it would seem some cracks are appearing with 3 of the 7 falling from their peaks:

With regard to the markets across the globe the returns are:

With FBT time fast approaching, it’s important you stay on track.

What you need to do this fringe benefits tax (FBT) time

  • Work out if you have an FBT liability for fringe benefits you’ve provided to your employees or their associates between 1 April 2023 and 31 March 2024.

  • If you have an FBT liability you need to lodge an FBT return and pay the amount due by 21 May.

  • If you’re currently registered for FBT but you don't need to lodge, let the ATO know to prevent them from seeking a return from you at a later date.

  • Remember, when the new FBT year starts on 1 April, you can choose to use existing records instead of travel diaries and declarations for some fringe benefits.

New guidelines

The ATO has released a new guideline that provides a shortcut method to help work out the cost of charging electric vehicles (EV) at your employee's home for FBT purposes. Eligible employers can choose to use either the EV home charging rate of 4.2 cents per kilometre or the actual cost.  Click below to learn more about the guidelines.

Make sure you understand your FBT obligations and the records you need to keep to avoid an FBT liability.

Source and credit:

This initiative provides small businesses with a bonus tax deduction to help them train new staff and upskill existing staff.

What do you get?

Additional 20% tax deduction.

Who is this for?

Small businesses.


Small businesses with an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million will be allowed an additional 20% tax deduction for external training courses delivered to employees by registered training providers.

The boost applies to eligible expenditure incurred from 7:30 pm AEDT on 29 March 2022 until 30 June 2024.

The expenditure must be:

  • for the provision of training to employees of your business, either in-person in Australia, or online

  • charged, directly or indirectly, by a registered external training provider that is not you or an associate of yours

  • already deductible for your business under taxation law

  • incurred within a specified period (between 7:30 pm AEDT or by legal time in the ACT on 29 March 2022 and 30 June 2024).

Check if you can apply

To access the small business skills and training boost, your business needs to be a small business entity. Your aggregated annual turnover must be less than $50 million for the income year in which you incur the expenditure.

Source and credit:

Thursday 21 March 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM AEDT

This FREE webinar speaker, Court Sayer-Roberts a qualified small business financial counsellor, brings over 20 years management experience in New Zealand and Australia, provides NSW business owners with information and advice on how to manage cash flow for business success.

You have heard the phrase in relation to a key determinant for small business success, "cash is king."

This webinar helps you understand why. The research is very clear – the more frequently a business owner reviews accurate financial reports and makes informed decisions, the more likely the business is to succeed.

Staying the distance whilst you start up and grow your small business enterprise is all about understanding, strategically managing, and preserving your greatest asset – your cash.

Embrace these change levers to maximise business success.

Learning objectives:

  • learn about 3 key financial tools to manage your business – balance sheet, profit & loss, and cash flow

  • understand the 7 change levers and practical measures to optimise cash flow

  • understand the importance of detailed cash flow forecasting.

Source and credit:

We always like to support our locals!  Here are some community events happening this month (in date order).

Mullumbimby Farmers Market next date is Friday, 1 March 2024 | 7:00 AM to 11:00 AM

Since its opening in 2010, the market has become the gathering spot for Mullumbimby’s vibrant community, re-inventing the age-old tradition of a community market meeting place. Set under magnificent fig trees in the lush foothills of Mt Chincogan, it’s a wonderful place to shop for fresh produce, meet with friends, enjoy a market brekkie and local coffee, and soak up the fun and friendly vibe.

There’s live local music each week, plus a dedicated kid’s space to keep the little ones entertained. The market also hosts regular workshops and special events throughout the year. The market is a not-for-profit organisation, which means every dollar you spend goes toward supporting local farmers, the community, and a more sustainable future.

The market is held from 7:00 am to 11:00 am every Friday.

Location:  The Mullum Showgrounds, Main Arm Road, Mullumbimby

Clean up Australia Day date is Sunday, 3 March 2024 | 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM

Help the Byron Shire Council keep our beaches and rivers clean and pristine this Clean Up Australia Day.Council is supporting Positive Change for Marine Life to host a community clean in Brunswick Heads.

What to bring: Hat, sunscreen, footwear, and your reusable cup and water bottle!

FREE Coffee provided by Old Maids Cafe.

All members of the community are welcome to get involved with collecting litter and conducting an audit of findings to help keep rubbish out of the ocean and contribute to conservation research.

Location:  Register at Torakina Park, next to the toilet blocks, South Beach Road, Brunswick Heads

Byron Bay Community Market next date is Sunday, 3 March 2024 | 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM

The Byron Bay Community Market hosts an eclectic collection of market stalls that showcase what Byron has to offer.

The market is held from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm on the 1st Sunday of every month.

Road closures and traffic changes on market day:

  • Jonson Street is closed to traffic at the corner of Byron and Marvel Streets from 5am to 5pm.

  • Traffic is diverted via Fletcher Street.

  • The Lawson Street South carpark is closed from 5am to 5pm.

  • There may be traffic delays are on Lawson Street between the Shirley Street and Jonson Street roundabouts between 6am to 8am and 3pm to 5.30pm.

  • The railway carpark is open under traffic control via the laneway on Jonson Street.

  • Traffic controllers will be in place on market day. 

Location: Byron Bay CBD, Railway Park, Jonson Street, Byron Bay

Council planning meeting next date is Thursday, 14 March 2024 | 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Council meetings are held in the Chambers. 

Go to How to join the meeting for ways you can participate in the meeting. 

A livestream is available to watch online. 

Questions about the meeting?

Location: Council Chambers, 70 Station Street, Mullumbimby

Mullumbimby Community Market next date is Saturday, 16 March 2024 | 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM

The Mullumbimby Community Market is held on the third Saturday of each month from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm.

Location: Corner of Stuarts and Myocum Streets, Mullumbimby

Australian Pro-Adaptive Surfing Championships date is Sunday, 17 March - Friday 22 March 2024 | 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Byron Bay proudly welcomes the 2024 Blackmores Australian Pro Adaptive Surfing Championships, to be held from Sunday 17 to Friday 22 March.Main Beach to The Pass will be home to this groundbreaking event – the first of its kind on Australian shores!This championship will feature over 100 competitors in nine divisions, spotlighting the exceptional skills of adaptive surfers from around the world!To learn more about the event, please visit the Adaptive Surf Pro Website.Please support this unforgettable event, celebrating the true spirit of inclusion in the world of surfing!

Event supported by Byron Shire Council. 

Location: Dening Park, Lawson Street, Byron Bay

Autumn Plant Fair date is Sunday, 17 March 2024 | 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM

The Mullumbimby Autumn Plant Fair invites you to be a part of growing our communities' love for plants!

Come along to enjoy:

  • Plant stalls.

  • Music.

  • Talks.

Increase your connection to thriving food gardens and native ecosystems.

Interested in hosting a stall at the Plant Fair?

Visit the Mullum Seed Website if you are interested in hosting a stall at the plant fair.

To be part of this great event, you are asked to sell healthy plants, or products associated with plants.

Local growers are supported, aiming to connect our community with nurseries and businesses in the area. 

This event is supported by Byron Shire Council through the Events and Festivals Sponsorship Fund.

Location: Mullumbimby Community Gardens, 156 Stuart Street, Mullumbimby

Council ordinary meeting next date is Thursday, 28 March 2024 | 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Council meetings are held in the Chambers. 

Go to How to join the meeting for ways you can participate in the meeting. 

A livestream is available to watch online. 

Questions about the meeting?

Location: Council Chambers, 70 Station Street, Mullumbimby

If you want to know more about what is going on in your local community, click the link below.

Source and credit:

If you wish to arrange a telephone appointment or zoom meeting with one of our team please contact our office either by telephone or email.

Key lodgment and payment dates for business

21 March

Activity statements

  • February monthly activity statements – final date for lodgment and payment.


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