CTF study: Who pays Canada's income tax bill?
- Those with incomes over $100,000 are 8.4% of all tax filers and pay almost 52% of all federal income tax.
- As a percentage of the economy, Canadian taxes and fees were lower under Pierre Trudeau.
OTTAWA, ON: In the midst of the debate over the federal government’s proposed tax changes, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) today released a new study, Who Pays Income Tax? Based on the most recent CRA filing data available (2014), here are the facts about who pays income tax and in what proportions:
- In 2014, 27.5 million Canadian filed a tax return; 33% (9.1 million) paid no income tax; 67% (18.4 million tax filers) paid all the federal and provincial income tax.
- Those with incomes under $50,000 accounted for 86.4% of all tax filers and paid 13.2% of all federal income tax.
- Filers between $50,000 and $99,999 represented 23.3% of all filers and paid 35% of all federal income tax.
- Those with incomes at $100,000 and above represented 8.4% of all filers and paid 51.8% of all federal income tax
- Of note, those with incomes at $250,000 or higher represented 1% of all tax filers and paid 21.1% of all federal income tax.
“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently claimed that ‘the middle class pay too much in taxes and the wealthiest don't pay enough,” said study author Mark Milke. “The middle class could always use a tax break. But it is false to say higher income Canadians do not pay their fair share.”
“The CRA data shows the opposite: Six figure incomes make up less than one-tenth of all tax filers but pay almost 52% of all federal income tax and 54% of all provincial income tax,” continued Milke.
“The real numbers expose the lie that any Canadian should pay more,” said CTF Federal Director Aaron Wudrick. “Before any tax hikes in 2015 and 2016, anyone earning more than $50,000 already paid a higher proportion of their income in federal and provincial taxes than those below that threshold. How much more ‘fair’ do governments intend to get?”
Of note, with another data set from the federal finance department that totals taxes, fees and other revenues to all Canadian governments, the most recent statistics from 2015 show that general revenues to all Canadian governments amounted to 38.6% of GDP.
In the 1970s, under Pierre Trudeau as Prime Minister for most of that decade, general revenues to government as a percentage of the economy ranged from 35.2% to 38.1% of the economy.
“In the 1970s at least, Pierre Trudeau’s era was a lower-taxed time than the Justin Trudeau era,” noted Wudrick.