Farmers dip into their deposits
Balances held under the Farm Managed Deposits scheme have fallen from a peak this decade of $2.8 billion in June 2005 to the current level of $2.4 billion, indicating that farmers are using their savings to cope with loss of income caused by drought. The Farm Management Deposits scheme allows primary producers to set aside taxable income in profitable years, to be withdrawn in lower income periods. The deposits, which can be held by an approved deposit-taking institution, enjoy concessional tax treatment. There are 41,583 holders of farm management deposits, down from 43,583 in June 2005.