Fringe benefits tax: what is the benchmark interest rate to be used for the fringe benefits tax year commencing on 1 April 2018?
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1. The benchmark interest rate for the fringe benefits tax (FBT) year commencing on 1 April 2018 is 5.20% per annum. This rate replaces the rate of 5.25% that has applied for the previous FBT year commencing on 1 April 2017.
- a fringe benefit provided by way of a loan, and
- a car fringe benefit where an employer chooses to value the benefit using the operating cost method.
3. On 1 April 2018 an employer lends an employee $50,000 for five years at an interest rate of 5% per annum. Interest is charged and paid 6 monthly and no principal is repaid until the end of the loan. The actual interest payable by the employee for the current year is $2,500 ($50,000 x 5%). The notional interest, with a 5.20% benchmark rate, is $2,600. The taxable value is $100 ($2,600 - $2,500).
Note: FBT does not apply to a loan in relation to a shareholder in a private company, or an associate of such a shareholder, that causes (or will cause), the private company to be taken under Division 7A of Part III of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 to pay the shareholder or associate a dividend.
Date of effect
Commissioner of Taxation
28 March 2018
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