Journal article

The ATO Longitudinal Information Files (ALife): A New Resource for Retirement Policy Research

C Polidano, A Carter, M Chan, A Chigavazira, H To, J Holland, S Nguyen, H Vu, R Wilkins

Australian Economic Review | Wiley | Published : 2020

Abstract

The Australian Taxation Office release of annual longitudinally linked individual tax and superannuation records, known as the ATO Longitudinal Information Files (ALife), opens up opportunities for new research. In this study, we provide an overview of ALife, focusing on its use for retirement income research. To this end, we provide the first longitudinal estimates of superannuation outcomes for 1-year birth cohorts. Results show marked increase in disparity of super balances in the lead-up to retirement as those in the top quartile ramp-up their contributions, possibly to take advantage of the favourable tax treatment of superannuation income in retirement years.