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Update 1 September 2023



In this month's market update, the recent Purchasing Managers' Indices (PMI) release revealed a global economic downturn in major developed markets, except Japan, raising concerns due to PMI's historical correlation with economic growth. The data, divided into services and manufacturing sectors, highlights their contrasting trends, with services declining more than manufacturing improves. This has monetary policy implications; the U.S. Federal Reserve is expected to halt interest rate hikes, and the European Central Bank may follow suit. In Australia, the economic outlook faces challenges with declining economic output per person, stable wage growth, and persistent inflation pressures in rental costs. Despite economic weaknesses, Australia's economy remains resilient, with a strong labor market and rising dwelling prices. Forecasts anticipate a gradual rebound, aligning inflation with targets and slowly increasing unemployment rates.

Accurate calculation and claiming of fuel tax credits on your Business Activity Statement (BAS) are essential for financial compliance. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) provides a user-friendly fuel tax credit calculator to assist businesses in determining the correct rates for their fuel purchases when preparing their BAS. These rates undergo periodic changes, so it's crucial to stay updated based on the specific dates of fuel acquisition. All businesses claiming these credits should apply the new rates for fuel acquired from 1 August onwards.

The Small Business Training and Skills boost benefits small businesses with an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million from an additional 20% tax deduction for external training courses provided to their employees by registered training providers. This boost applies to eligible expenses incurred from 7:30 pm AEDT on March 29, 2022, until June 30, 2024. To qualify for this Small Business Skills and Training Boost, your business must be classified as a small business entity with an annual turnover of less than $50 million. To apply see below for more.

The Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO) is a refundable tax incentive designed for eligible Australian companies actively involved in the development of digital games. These qualifying companies have the opportunity to seek a 30% offset on their cumulative Qualifying Australian Development Expenditure (QADE) as validated by the Minister for the Arts. To be eligible, the QADE must exceed a minimum threshold of $500,000 and must have been incurred on or after the commencement date of July 1, 2022.

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. Don't miss the sample food festival this Saturday 2 September - a delight for foodies!

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

The WD Nicholls Team


The release of last week's Purchasing Managers' Indices (PMI) brought with it a somber tone, as there was scant good news to be found. These indices are closely watched indicators of economic health, and they exhibited a general downward trend in most major developed markets, with one notable exception being Japan. The significance of the PMI lies in its strong historical correlation with overall economic growth, and the dip in these figures has raised concerns about the current state of the global economic outlook.

One can dissect the PMI data into two primary components: those pertaining to the services industries and those related to the manufacturing sector. Interestingly, these PMIs have shed light on the contrasting trajectories of these two pillars of the global economy. Initially, there was an expectation that the gap between these two indices would narrow over time. This anticipation was based on the idea that as the boost from the services sector began to wane, manufacturing activity would gather steam and compensate for it. However, the reality has proven to be different, with the decline in PMI figures for services more than offsetting any improvements seen in the manufacturing sector.

These developments have significant implications for monetary policy. The U.S. Federal Reserve, for instance, was already anticipated to pause its interest rate hike cycle at its September meeting. The downbeat PMI readings, coupled with concerns about the European economy, are making it increasingly likely that the European Central Bank will also consider a similar course of action.

Wage increases have remained relatively stable, with an annual growth rate of approximately 3.7% in the first half of the year. The Reserve Bank anticipates a modest acceleration to about 4.1% by the end of the year, according to its quarterly statement on monetary policy.

While inflation pressures have eased since a peak in December, certain components of the consumer price index, particularly rental costs, are expected to rise. This is attributed to low rental vacancy rates and a lag in housing supply responding to population growth. However, there is a high degree of uncertainty regarding the future trajectory of inflation.

This update is closely scrutinized for any indications that the Reserve Bank's cycle of 12 interest rate increases since May 2022 might be coming to an end. Prior to the report's release, only one of the big four banks, NAB, predicted that the Reserve Bank would raise its cash rate above the current 4.1%.

The central bank, in its recent communication, has held its key interest rate steady for two consecutive months while signaling its willingness to raise borrowing costs further if necessary to combat inflation.

Weaknesses in the Australian economy include a drop in retail sales in June and poor consumer sentiment. Many fixed-rate mortgage holders are also facing significantly higher interest rates as their loans mature in the coming months.

Before the release of these forecasts, investors estimated a low probability of an interest rate increase at the Reserve Bank's September meeting, with only about a 5% chance, as indicated by the ASX. The immediate market response to the Reserve Bank's report showed minimal changes in both the Australian dollar and stock prices.

The Australian economy, which was growing at an annual rate of 1.6% at the end of the previous month, is projected to slow to 0.9% by the end of 2023, considering a population growth rate of approximately 2% for the year. This would result in a decline in per-capita gross domestic product. However, the forecasts also anticipate a gradual economic rebound, reaching a growth rate of 1.6% (approximately matching population growth) by the end of 2024 and further accelerating to 2.3% a year later.

In terms of inflation, the report foresees a decline in headline consumer price inflation from a 6% annual rate in the recently completed June quarter to 4.1% by the December quarter. This downward trajectory is expected to continue through 2025, when it will reach 2.8%, aligning with the RBA's previous report.

Underlying inflation, which excludes more volatile measures, is also expected to decline from 5.9% in the June quarter to 2.9% by mid-2025, ultimately returning to the RBA's target range of 2%-3%.

The unemployment rate is forecasted to gradually increase from its current rate of 3.5% to 3.9% by the end of 2023 and 4.2% within a year. By the end of 2025, it is expected to be around 4.5%, still below pre-pandemic levels, in line with previous predictions by the Reserve Bank.


Source: JP Morgan

Ensuring you accurately calculate and claim fuel tax credits on your Business Activity Statement (BAS) is crucial for your financial compliance. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) offers a user-friendly fuel tax credit calculator designed to assist businesses in determining the correct rates applicable to their fuel purchases when preparing their BAS.


Fuel tax credit rates are subject to periodic changes, and it's imperative to stay up-to-date with the latest rates corresponding to the specific dates when you acquired the fuel. For instance, as of 1 July, the fuel tax credit rate for heavy vehicles, including buses, coaches, and trucks traveling on public roads, underwent a decrease due to the rise in the road user charge.



Subsequently, on 1 August, fuel tax credit rates experienced an increase in alignment with the fuel excise indexation. Therefore, it is essential for all businesses claiming fuel tax credits to adopt the new rates for fuel acquisitions made from 1 August onwards.

To simplify the process, businesses that claim less than $10,000 in a given year can opt to use the rate applicable at the end of their BAS reporting period to calculate their claims accurately. This flexibility can streamline your financial record-keeping and claims process.


To ensure that your fuel tax credit claims are precise and compliant with ATO regulations, follow these steps:

  1. Utilise the ATO's fuel tax credit calculator as it integrates the most up-to-date rates.

  2. Maintain meticulous records of your fuel purchases, including invoices and receipts, to substantiate your claims in case of an audit.

  3. Be mindful of the time constraints associated with correcting any errors or discrepancies in your claims. Timely and accurate submissions are essential to avoid potential issues with the ATO.

By staying informed about the latest rates and utilising the ATO's resources, you can confidently manage your fuel tax credit claims and comply with tax regulations, ultimately contributing to the financial health and compliance of your business.


Source and credit: ATO.gov.au

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

Application detail:

What do you get? Additional 20% tax deduction.

Who is this for? Small businesses.

Overview 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.

Contact information

Source and credit: Business.gov.au

The Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO) is a refundable tax benefit available to eligible Australian companies engaged in digital game development. These companies can claim a 30% offset on their total Qualifying Australian Development Expenditure (QADE), as certified by the Minister for the Arts. To qualify, the QADE must be a minimum of $500,000 and incurred on or after July 1, 2022, with a maximum cap of $20 million per company per income year. This cap also applies to groups of connected or affiliated companies.


To claim the DGTO, a company must:

  1. Obtain a certificate from the Minister for the Arts, confirming eligibility and total QADE.

  2. Include the offset claim in their company tax return for the relevant income year.

  3. Be an Australian resident company with an Australian Business Number (ABN) or a foreign resident company with an ABN and a permanent establishment in Australia.

After receiving certification from the Minister for the Arts, companies can claim the DGTO on their 2022–23 company tax return by reporting it under label E - Refundable tax offsets.


Consolidated groups should ensure that the sum of all DGTO claims within the group does not exceed the $20 million cap for connected or affiliated companies.


Source and credit: ATO.gov.au

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


Sample Food Festival next date is Saturday 2 September 2023 | 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM

This event has been running for the past ten years and is a must for food-lovers.


It will be held at Bangalow Showground on Saturday 2 September.


Experience some of the region’s best restaurants, cooking demonstrations, kids activities and more.


Location: Bangalow Showgrounds, 1 Market Street, Bangalow


Byron Community Market next date is Sunday, 3 September 2023 | 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: in the Byron Bay CBD, spreads along the rail corridor, Railway Park, and onto Jonson Street.


Council planning meeting next date is Thursday, 14 September 2023 | 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Council meetings are usually held in the Chambers. As these were damaged in the 2022 floods, Council meetings are being held in the Conference Room, Mullumbimby Council Administration Building.

Location: Council Administration Building, 70 Station Street, Mullumbimby


Mullumbimby Community Market next date is Saturday, 16 September 2023 | 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


Council ordinary meeting next date is Thursday, 28 September 2023 | 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Council meetings are usually held in the Chambers. As these were damaged in the 2022 floods,


Council meetings are being held in the Conference Room, Mullumbimby Council Administration Building.

Location: Council Administration Building, 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: Byron.nsw.gov.au


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 lodgement and payment dates for business


21 September

Activity statements

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

30 September

Single Touch Payroll (STP) closely-held payees

  • End-of-year finalisation declaration through STP for closely held payees due for employers who have both closely held payees and arm's length employees.

Annual TFN withholding report

  • Annual TFN withholding report for closely-held trusts where a trustee has been required to withhold amounts from payments to beneficiaries during the previous financial year – final date for lodgment.




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