Category Archives: Financial Articles

SARS, Employers and Remote Workers

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The South African National Treasury’s budget proposals for February 2023 have highlighted intentions to harmonize obligations for both local and foreign employers, particularly affecting remote workers. This move by the Treasury, in coordination with the South African Revenue Service (SARS), could lead to foreign employers being mandated to register as “employers” with SARS. This change is motivated by the growing global trend of remote work, which has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. It allows employers from different parts of the world to engage South African workers for remote positions, providing mutual benefits.

Currently, there exist disparities in legislation concerning the obligations of foreign employers. The proposed amendments aim to standardize the registration requirements for foreign employers, ensuring parity between resident and foreign employers. Foreign employers who previously didn’t have a “representative employer” in South Africa to handle remuneration and deductions might be required to comply with PAYE deductions, the 1% skills development levy (SDL), and Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) contributions.

Practical implications arise from these changes. Foreign employers may lack certain credentials necessary for SARS registration, such as a CIPC registration number or a South African bank account. In response, experts suggest employing an Employer of Record (EOR) company that acts as the in-country employer, managing payroll compliance obligations on behalf of the foreign entity. This arrangement ensures adherence to local employment laws and tax regulations while allowing the foreign employer to maintain control over day-to-day supervision and work-related decisions.

The proposed alignment aims to streamline the regulatory landscape for remote workers and foreign employers in South Africa. The draft Taxation Laws Amendment Bill for 2023, expected in July, will likely provide more specific wording for these amendments. This effort to establish consistent rules for both resident and foreign employers reflects the changing dynamics of the global workforce, driven by the surge in remote work opportunities.

The proposed changes to South African employment regulations seek to address the growing prevalence of remote work by establishing uniform obligations for foreign and local employers. While these changes pose practical challenges, the adoption of an EOR arrangement could serve as a viable solution for foreign employers seeking to navigate the new compliance landscape efficiently. The envisioned amendments represent a broader global trend in adapting legislation to the realities of remote work in the digital age.

Source: BusinessTech South Africa

Future Work at Home Outlook for Australians

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The COVID-19 pandemic prompted a massive shift in the global workforce, with many employees transitioning to remote work. In Australia, this shift has led to significant changes in work patterns and attitudes towards remote work compared to working in an office.

Before the pandemic, a Melbourne property surveyor employed 180 staff who worked in the office every day at 9 a.m. Now, employees work from home, allowing for more flexible schedules. For instance, drone operator Nicholas Coomber can start his fieldwork as early as 7:30 a.m., affording him more family time and the ability to pick up his children from daycare earlier.

While corporate leaders such as Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase and Elon Musk of Tesla and Twitter call for a return to in-office work, Australian unions are pushing for remote work (WFH) to become the norm. Unions have taken legal action against Australia’s largest bank and are working with the government to advocate for continued remote work opportunities.

Australia has a history of embracing labor market changes during crises, often setting precedents for other English-speaking countries. For example, Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) faced a challenge from its staff who took the bank to an industrial tribunal to contest a directive requiring office work half the time. Similarly, National Australia Bank (NAB) reached an agreement with a union allowing employees to request WFH, while Canada’s federal workers lacked similar protections.

In the European Union, lawmakers are updating telework protections to align with the post-lockdown economy. However, the demand for WFH remains strong globally. A survey found that employees with WFH experience prefer two days of remote work per week, twice as much as what bosses prefer.

Despite the benefits for employees, there’s a potential for conflict between workers and employers over remote work arrangements. The Australia Institute’s Jim Stanford noted that rising unemployment could shift bargaining power toward employers, potentially leading to a “historic confrontation.”

This shift to remote work has already impacted office landlords, with a notable decrease in demand for office space. Around one-sixth of Australian capital city office space currently stands vacant due to reduced in-person attendance.

Overall, the article highlights the evolving dynamics of remote work in Australia, showcasing the contrast between employee preferences and employer expectations, and the potential for long-term changes in work patterns and labor market dynamics.

Source: Byron Kaye

The Alarming Impact of “Loud Quitting” on Workforce Engagement and Global Economy

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BNN Bloomberg reports that, in a recent Gallup survey, it has come to light that a significant number of workers are engaging in what they call “loud quitting” – showing up for work but actively disengaging and taking actions to harm their organizations. This phenomenon is responsible for a staggering 8.8 trillion dollars in losses to the global economy, amounting to nine percent of the global GDP.

While “quiet quitters” still have a chance of being inspired or motivated to become more productive, the situation is more concerning with “loud quitters.” These employees have become a lost cause, as they demonstrate outright opposition to leadership and the organization.

Managers are faced with the daunting task of dealing with this disengagement crisis, as nearly 60 percent of workers worldwide admitted to quietly quitting their jobs. This leaves less than a quarter of the workforce who are actively engaged and contributing positively to their workplaces.

It’s not just a matter of job dissatisfaction; the lack of engagement is making people miserable, and it is taking a severe toll on the global economy. Addressing this issue and finding ways to re-engage disheartened employees is vital for organizations and economies to thrive in the long run.

London Workers Reluctant to Return to Office

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A recent survey conducted by Bloomberg Intelligence reveals that nearly 75% of London workers prefer the flexibility of remote work and would contemplate quitting their jobs rather than giving it up.

The study, which included responses from 500 employees, highlights that 40% of respondents would require a raise of at least 16% to reconsider returning to the office.

The motivation behind the survey was to gain insights into the employees’ perspective on remote work, especially considering the significant impact it has on various industries, such as real estate with multinational tenants in prime spaces.

The survey’s results indicate a strong desire for remote work among London workers, with 95% already receiving work from home options from their employers.

Moreover, 70% of respondents believe that remote work is here to stay, becoming a permanent fixture in the workplace.

The data also shows a shift in attitudes towards remote work across different age groups. In June 2022, only 44% of the older generation favored permanent work from home arrangements, but that number has now risen to 77%, bringing it closer to the preferences of younger workers.

Various factors contribute to this trend. The survey reveals that reasons for employees preferring remote work include issues such as costly commutes, rail strikes, and overall convenience. Additionally, the opportunity for salary increases is a key consideration for those considering a return to the office. However, networking and knowledge transfer for younger staff are crucial aspects that motivate some employees to come back to the physical office.

The survey’s findings strongly suggest that remote work is likely to remain a dominant feature of London’s workforce. The allure of flexibility, cost-saving benefits, and the ongoing pandemic’s influence have solidified the preference for remote work, indicating a substantial cultural shift in the city’s working lifestyle.

Gap CEO to Leave the Company

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TRANSCRIPT: You’re now at Stock to Watch as we go to break. Shares in the company Gap are, let’s see, down 4% in after hours trading. The company just announcing CEO Sonia Syngal is stepping down from her position from the company’s board. She’ll be replaced on an interim basis by current Executive Chairman Bob Martin.

The company is also naming a CEO of the Old Navy division. Horacio Barbeito is joining WalMart where he now serves as president and CEO of Walmart Canada.

Gap sales in the second quarter: Net sales down about high single-digit range, relatively in line with its prior expectations. Now sees Q2 adjusted operating margin percentage zero negative.

10 Top Money Saving Tips

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10 Top Money Saving Tips

What are the best money saving tips? Many people have been asking themselves this important question for a couple of times without getting that perfect answer. The following are some of the great tips to save your money;

1. Make your shopping budget: many people often ends up having a spendthrift spending due to lack of shopping list. Make sure whenever you shop, you have a shopping list that will guide you make an informed shopping decision.

2. Watch less television advertisement: Many people often ends up spending their saving due to luring television advertisements about untrue amazing deals. This will help spend your money appropriately.

3. Live within your means: Living a lifestyle that you cannot afford is huge hindrance to saving money. This is because you will end up spending everything you have for the sake of the given lifestyle.

4. Limit the number of times you go out: Going out is the number one way that makes people to spend all their savings. Instead, you invite your friends to your place while preparing meals for them thus saving money.

5. Reduce the amount of money on family or personal entertainment: Most people often spent as high as half their monthly income on family or personal entertainment. By reducing the amount of money you spend on entertainment, you will definitely increase your savings much faster.

6. Avoid expensive habits such as alcohol, smoking etc. Majority of people often spent crazy amounts of money on these kinds of lifestyles and avoiding them will make you have remarkable savings. As a special tip, make sure you only spent on the necessities as opposed to the luxuries.

7. Reduce excessive use of the credit cards: most people often accumulate huge debts through the credit cards. Reducing the usage of credit cards will help you reduce the amounts of credit that you will be ultimately obliged to pay instead of saving.

8. Do second hand shopping: Through online shopping websites such as Craigslist, you can get equally useful and new materials instead of making new purchases. This will definitely help you save money that you could have spent when making new purchases.

9. Take advantage of the shopping discounts and buy bulk; This is the best way of reducing cost at the same time saving money. In addition, you need to be keen the latest purchasing promotions that will enable you to enjoy the best deals in the market.

10. Consult a financial expert on the best money saving tips: Depending on your financial status or the amount of money that you earn at the end of the month, you can approach a qualified expert for the best advice that fits your finances since different people often face different financial problems.

In conclusion, the above 10 best money saving tips will not help solve your current financial challenges but also help come up the best strategies on how plan your future for a financial stability, freedom and prosperity. In addition, you will also avoid the fake deals of get rich fast that are offered in the market.

6 Great Ways to Invest Your Money

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6 Great Ways to Invest Your Money

It’s not enough anymore to just save your money. Keeping your savings in a bank or in cash actually devalues money as the yearly inflation rates rise. Here are some great ways to invest your money and prevent losing it in the long run:

1. Time Deposit
Banks give higher interest rates than the normal rates in savings accounts in exchange for the client not withdrawing their deposit for a fixed amount of time. Depending on the interest rate, you can actually earn money without doing anything.

2. Mutual Funds
A mutual fund is the pooling of investments from a lot of people. In general, money is given to a funds manager else for investing. You can win some or you can lose some. This is considerably less of a risk than the stock market, considering the ones doing the investing are professionals and have more experience.

3. Stock Market
The stock market involves a lot of studying about the market and its trends. The pay-off is great if you get the timing right. It’s a high-risk, high return business that can be profitable for people who are serious about learning the trading market.

4. Real Estate
If you have a lot of cash and a lot of time, real estate is a good way to invest. As a general rule, land value increases as time passes by and you can earn a lot without working a single muscle.

5. Forex
Foreign exchange can be a tricky business to deal with as it involves global markets. However, gearing up by learning the tricks of the trade will undoubtedly give great results to one who’s willing to learn.

6. Gold and Silver
If learning the market is too much of a chore, investing in physical gold and silver may be the way to go. Gold and silver are fairly stable investments in the long run but can be volatile for short periods.

Better Family Budgeting – Easy Tips and Tricks

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Better Family Budgeting – Easy Tips and Tricks

Having a bit of a hard time with the family budget? Well, don’t fret too much for there would always be ways through which you would be able to maximize what you have without sacrificing the necessities. Before we get to the tips,it is important to note that for a household budget to actually work you would need to be disciplined about your purchases and make sure that you stick to what you have planned out. This is also one of the major reasons why some people have successful household budgets whilst others are still struggling to put theirs into action. The keywords? Discipline and prioritize. Now on to the tips.

1. Use cash. You may have heard of this numerous times before but very few people actually do it. Continuously using your credit card to pay for everything that you purchase makes you feel like you have an endless supply of money— up until the bills come. Only then will you realize that you cannot afford most of what you’ve bought and would have to deal with the consequences now. Using cash would help you avoid all of that. By paying with cash, you would be able to control your spending as well as properly gauge just how much you can afford to spend. It is one of the most effective ways that you can use if you want to stick to the budget. So lock away those credit cards and start carrying just enough cash for the day.

2. D.I.Y. Doing things yourself is not only a creative endeavor but it would also help you save on a heap of cash. For example, instead of buying birthday, thank you and invitation cards, it would be much cheaper to just go and make these yourself. It would be more personal and the recipient would definitely appreciate it more given that you’ve put a lot of effort into creating it.

3. Shop off-season. It’s summer and the mall is having a clearance sale on all their past season items. This is a great opportunity for you to get these items at a significantly lower cost when compared to the original price. But who needs winter jackets right now? Well, you might not need one at the moment but come winter again, you’ll definitely be able to use. What’s a few months of waiting when you can save a lot of money? So buy seasonal items during off-season periods.

4. Take advantage of family packages, discounts and coupons. Going out for a meal with the family? Try going online and search for discounted packages or coupons. They might not pay for the entire meal itself but you’ll be able to take off as much as 40% off the price of your total order. Keep in mind that many restaurants offer such deals to attract clients. So take advantage of it. The same applies to traveling. Many travel agencies, hotels and resorts offer these kinds of discounts and packages so make sure you check those out as well.

5. Turn the TV off. These days, people spend a good amount of their lives in front of the television. Not only is this unproductive, it also makes people lethargic. So if you and your family have a day off, do not spend it watching television. Instead, bond with each other through family activities. Bring out the board games, try your hand at crafting or go out to the park for a picnic (prepare the meal yourself, it is much cheaper!). There are plenty of things that you can do away from home. Not only will you be able to bond together, you’ll also be saving money on the electric bills while you’re away.

So there you have it, just a few of the things that you can do in order to save a bit of money whilst making sure that you and your family are still able to enjoy a quality life.

Finance Information

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