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Breaking Down the 2024 Federal Budget: Winners, Losers, and Long-Term Impacts

In this analysis, we will discuss the winners and losers of the 2024 federal budget. This budget has sparked various reactions, and we aim to break down its impacts and implications professionally and concisely.

Key Changes in Student Debt

One significant change is how student debt and HEX will be treated. Previously, student debt was indexed to inflation, which could lead to high repayment rates in inflationary periods. Now, debt will be indexed to either wage growth or the Consumer Price Index (CPI), whichever is lower. This policy aims to provide a more manageable repayment structure for graduates.

Tax Changes

The budget introduces several tax changes, primarily benefiting lower-income earners. While tax cuts are always welcomed by taxpayers, higher-income earners are receiving less than anticipated, which may cause dissatisfaction. The idea is to stimulate the economy by putting more money into the hands of those likely to spend it immediately.

Energy Bill Relief

There is a provision for energy bill relief, with a $300 reduction for households and $325 for small businesses. This measure is intended to alleviate the rising cost of living but may have inflationary effects in the long term.

Rental Assistance

The budget also includes a 10% increase in rental assistance, amounting to an additional $19 per fortnight. However, this is unlikely to significantly impact the rental crisis, as the underlying issue of housing supply remains unaddressed.

Defense Spending

The budget allocates $5.7 billion for defense over the next four years, with a longer-term plan extending over a decade. While this spending aims to bolster national security, the actual economic benefit remains uncertain, especially if significant funds are spent overseas.

NDIS Adjustments

Changes to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) mean that once allocated funds are exhausted, recipients will no longer receive automatic top-ups. This move aims to control the spiraling costs of the NDIS, but it may place additional strain on vulnerable individuals relying on this support.

Impact on Universities and Students

Universities face new challenges with the requirement to allocate 40% of revenue generated from student services to student-led organizations. This funding model might limit universities’ ability to invest in infrastructure and resources. Additionally, the cap on international student numbers and the increased visa fees could reduce the influx of students, impacting both university revenue and the broader economy.


The 2024 federal budget presents a mix of short-term relief measures and long-term challenges. While certain groups may benefit immediately, the broader implications suggest potential inflationary pressures and unresolved structural issues. Effective leadership requires a vision that extends beyond immediate gains, addressing long-term needs and fostering a sustainable and prosperous society.

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