Unlike in previous Federal Budgets, direct relief for retirees and age pensioners (as well as pensioners more broadly) are light-on this year.

Deeming rates frozen again

Deeming rates will be frozen for another 12 months. These are essentially the rates the government deems assets held by those on social support to be earning, and haven't been lifted for a number of years now.

For a single, the first $56,400 of assets has a deemed rate of 0.25%, while anything over that is deemed at 2.25%.

Many term deposits and savings accounts are earning comfortably north of 4.00% p.a. and even 5.00% p.a.

If you had $50,000 in cash in a term deposit paying 5.00% p.a. interest fortnightly, you'd earn $2,500 a year or about $96.15 a fortnight.

Under the lower deeming rate, the government says you're earning $125 a year or about $4.81 a fortnight, which will factor in to your pension payments.

This will apply until 30 June 2025 and will benefit around 876,000 income support recipients, including around 450,000 Age Pensioners.

PBS co-payments frozen

There will be a one-year freeze on the maximum Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) patient co-payment for everyone with a Medicare card and a five-year freeze for pensioners and other concession cardholders.

This change means that no pensioner or concession card holder will pay more than $7.70 (plus any applicable manufacturer premiums) for up to five years.

Boosted Rent Assistance

Rent Assistance will also be increased by another 10% in financial year 2024-2025, adding to the 15% increase realised in September 2023.

The change will cost the Federal Government around $1.9 billion and impact approximately one million Australian households.

It will come into effect in September, when the rate is traditionally indexed against inflation.

How does this compare to last year's Budget? Check out our coverage of the 2023 Federal Budget for pensioners.


Advertisement

Need somewhere to store cash and earn interest? The table below features term deposits with some of the highest interest rates on the market.

Provider

Annually$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]5000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details
A GREAT RATE FOR OVER 55s
  • If you are over 55 you can take advantage of special rates
  • $0 monthly account fee
  • Guaranteed rate of return
A GREAT RATE FOR OVER 55s

Term Deposit (Platinum Plus 55+) - 12 months

  • If you are over 55 you can take advantage of special rates
  • $0 monthly account fee
  • Guaranteed rate of return
At Maturity, Monthly$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]2500031$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

Term Deposit - 12 months (Monthly)

    Annually, At Maturity$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]100031$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

    Term Deposit ($1000-$500001) - 12 months

      Annually$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]100031$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

      Personal Term Deposit - 12 months (Annually)

        At Maturity, Annually$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]2500031$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]More details

        Term Deposit ($25k-$5m) - 12 months

          Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

          All products with a link to a product provider’s website have a commercial marketing relationship between us and these providers. These products may appear prominently and first within the search tables regardless of their attributes and may include products marked as promoted, featured or sponsored. The link to a product provider’s website will allow you to get more information or apply for the product. By de-selecting “Show online partners only” additional non-commercialised products may be displayed and re-sorted at the top of the table. For more information on how we’ve selected these “Sponsored”, “Featured” and “Promoted” products, the products we compare, how we make money, and other important information about our service, please click here. Rates correct as of May 20, 2024. View disclaimer.

          Image by Matteo Vistocco on Unsplash