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Further information released by the ATO regarding JobKeeper 2.0

18 September 2020

The following changes will apply to JobKeeper fortnights commencing 28 September 2020.

Key changes

Actual decline in turnover test:

For JobKeeper fortnights from 28 September 2020 you will need to meet an actual decline in turnover test. An actual decline in turnover test will need to be met for each extension period:

  • Extension 1: from 28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021
  • Extension 2: from 4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021

The actual decline in turnover test is similar to the original decline in turnover test. However:

  • It must be done for specific quarters only. For Extension 1 - September 2020 quarter must be compared to the September 2019 quarter. For Extension 2 - December 2020 quarter must be compared to the December 2019 quarter.
  • You must use actual sales made in the relevant quarter, not projected sales, when working out your turnover
  • You must allocate sales to the relevant quarter in the same way you would report those sales to a particular business activity statement if you were registered for GST.

If you are not eligible for JobKeeper under Extension 1 because you do not satisfy the turnover test, you may still be eligible for JobKeeper under Extension 2 if you satisfy the later turnover test. If the “basic” actual turnover test is not appropriate to your circumstances, an alternative turnover test may be available. Details of the alternative tests are yet to be released by the ATO or Treasury.

Rates of payment

For an employee or eligible business participant to receive the Tier 1 (higher) rate of JobKeeper payments in each extension period they will need to satisfy the 80-hour threshold:

The Tier 1 rate will apply to:

  • Eligible employees who worked for 80 hours or more in the four weeks prior to the last day of the pay period that ended before either 1 March 2020 or 1 July 2020, and
  • Eligible business participants who were actively engaged in the business for 80 hours or more in February 2020 and provide a declaration to that effect.

In some circumstances, alternative reference periods may apply for determining the 80 hour threshold (e.g. where the employee was on unpaid emergency leave during the relevant 4 week period).

Key Dates

  • Businesses will have to wait until the end of September when they complete their BAS before applying the decline in turnover test for the Extension period 1 (as the test is now based on actual GST turnover).
  • For the JobKeeper fortnights stating 28 September and 12 October 2020, the ATO is allowing employers until 31 October to meet the wage condition for employees. 
  • Monthly business declarations for October (the first two fortnights of the extension) will need to be made by 14 November 2020. If you were eligible for JobKeeper 1.0 you need to tell the ATO whether the Tier 1 (higher) or Tier 2 (lower) payment rate applies to your eligible employees or business participants in the monthly declaration form.

For further information please see the ATO website or contact your local Boyce accountant

JobKeeper - ATO Releases Further Information on Change to Employee Eligibility

18 August 2020

Earlier this month the Federal Government announced a key change to the JobKeeper employee eligibility requirements. From 3 August 2020, workers employed from 1 July 2020 and meet the other eligibility requirements will become eligible for JobKeeper.

The ATO has now released further information on this change, and details of how it will be administered.

Please note that this change to employee eligibility will affect the current JobKeeper scheme as well as the extended JobKeeper scheme (JobKeeper 2.0). The change in employment date to 1 July 2020 does not apply for JobKeeper fortnights that ended before 3 August 2020 (that is, employees must continue to satisfy the 1 March 2020 test to be an eligible employee for JobKeeper fortnights ended before 3 August 2020).

Overview of eligibility requirements from 3 August 2020

An employee is an eligible employee for a JobKeeper fortnight starting on or after 3 August 2020 if they:

  • are employed by at any time in the JobKeeper fortnight;
  • didn't receive any of these payments during the JobKeeper fortnight:   
    • government parental leave or Dad and Partner Pay;
    • a payment in accordance with Australian workers compensation law for an individual’s total incapacity for work;
    • agree to be nominated;
    • were either an eligible employee for a JobKeeper fortnight ended before 3 August 2020 using the 1 March test or they meet certain conditions at 1 July 2020 (the 1 July test):
      • At 1 July 2020 they were employed as either a:  
        • non-casual employee; or
        • long term casual employee not a permanent employee of any other employer;
        • they were 18 years or older (if they were 16 or 17, they can also qualify if they were independent or not studying full time on 1 July 2020); and
        • were an Australian resident under the Social Security Act 1991 or a Special Category (Subclass 444) Visa Holder.

Read more >

Macroeconomic Update

14 August 2020

Reconciling the market disconnect

  • It’s apparent that many investors were ‘voting’ for a sharp rebound once the dark COVID-19 clouds cleared. The S&P/ASX 200 Index ticked past 6,000 points in early July and is once again in bull market territory.
  • The past three months of hyper growth rates in online sales have been the equivalent of the past three years of cumulative growth. In the U.S, a similar story, as investor sentiment recovered during the quarter on optimism that the negative economic impacts of Covid-19 will not be as severe as initially feared and hopes that monetary policy support will avert a deep, prolonged global recession.
  • Despite the optimism, spates of volatility continued to hamper global equities during the quarter, exacerbated by simmering geopolitical concerns and fears of a potentially more disruptive second wave.
  • While markets have shown strength, risks remain. Geopolitical risks, while ever present, continue to impact market volatility. Tensions between the US and China are elevated, and the outcome of the US presidential election in November remains uncertain.

Where to from here?

  • The Australian economy contracted by a relatively mild -0.3% in the March quarter but given the full impact of shutdowns likely to be felt in the June quarter, it is almost certain that the Australian economy is in its first recession in 29 years.
  • Against that backdrop, the question now becomes “where to from here” and without a doubt one of the most important factors in the coming months will be the extent to which governments continue with fiscal measures to support the economy.
  • To date, businesses and households have received significant government support from the JobKeeper and JobSeeker programs, the launch of the $25,000 Homebuilder program, and other incentives by state governments.
  • Further easing of lending criteria by APRA in addition to loan repayment deferrals by the major banks has lent further support.
  • In late July, the Government announced the extension of the JobKeeper program (albeit at a lower rate), which was no doubt welcomed by the broader business community, particularly retail as we move towards the end of 2020.
  • The Reserve Bank of Australia’s outlook for the economy and interest rates was recently described by Governor Lowe as a world “where there’ll be a shadow from the virus for quite a few years”, causing “deflationary forces” and “large output gaps.” The RBA kept rates on hold at 0.25% at its July meeting and is prepared to scale up bond purchases if needed.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this document is based on information believed to be accurate and reliable at the time of publication. Any illustrations of past performance do not imply similar performance in the future. To the extent permissible by law, neither we nor any of our related entities, employees, or directors gives any representation or warranty as to the reliability, accuracy or completeness of the information; or accepts any responsibility for any person acting, or refraining from acting, on the basis of information contained in this newsletter. This information is of a general nature only. It is not intended as personal advice or as an investment recommendation.

JobKeeper 2.0 - Changes to Eligibility Requirements Announced

9 August 2020

In response to the ongoing pandemic and the tougher restrictions in Victoria, the Treasurer has announced changes to the eligibility requirements for JobKeeper 2.0, as well as a change in the relevant date for employment for both the existing scheme as well as JobKeeper 2.0.

Please note that the changes to the decline in turnover tests under JobKeeper 2.0 will not affect JobKeeper 1.0 which will run until 27 September 2020.

Key change to JobKeeper 1.0

Employee test

From 3 August 2020, the relevant date for employment will move from 1 March 2020 to 1 July 2020. This change is intended to increase employee eligibility both under the existing scheme (JobKeeper 1.0) as well as the extension (JobKeeper 2.0).

Under this announced change, employees will be eligible if they:

  • Are currently employed by an eligible employer (including where they were stood down or rehired)
  • Work for the eligible employer (or another entity in their wholly owned group) either: a full-time, part-time or fixed-term employee at 1 July 2020; or a long-term casual employee (employed on a regular and systematic basis for at least 12 months) as at 1 July 2020 and not a permanent employee of any other employer.
  • Were aged 18 years or older at 1 July 2020 (if an employee is 16 or 17 they can also qualify if they are independent or not undertaking full time study).

Please note the other employee eligibility requirements around nomination of eligible employer, Australian residency and government payments remain unchanged.

We are awaiting further details of how the ATO will be managing this change at the time of this e-Alert.

Read more >

Boyce MI - Management Reporting Made Easy

6 August 2020

Earlier this year, we proudly and successfully released our next generation management reporting application Boyce MI (BMI).

BMI was designed to take the guess work out of the monthly reporting process; putting easy to understand information into your hands so you can make better business decisions.

BMI was built from the ground up as a web application that connects with accounting data in the cloud, so you easily connect and access your information from anywhere with a modern web browser.

Benefits of BMI

  • Boyce’s unique management reporting system at your fingertips
  • Know where your business’s cash flow is and flexibly change your plans to meet demands
  • Work on your business, not in your business, by proactively planning your year and then reporting progress against the budget
  • Readily adapt to change by creating additional budgets or reforecasts for what-if planning
  • Work wherever, whenever. Accessible from a modern web browser over any internet connection
  • Fast multi-level reporting (whole of business, enterprise and summary)
  • Built in help documentation for step by step guidance
  • Receive monthly updates to keep you in the loop with new developments & features

​Features of BMI

  • Works with Xero, MYOB AccountRight Live (cloud only) and any accounting system with Excel export
  • Import a budget in the Boyce format
  • Reforecast - export actuals over your existing budget
  • View reports on screen or export to Excel and PDF

BMI is available in a monthly reporting package or to purchase directly.

If you would like more information on how Boyce MI can streamline your reporting process and help you to strengthen data-driven decision making for your business, please speak to your accountant.