Canada’s top 1% saw fastest income acceleration, overall decrease in taxes in 2017

OTTAWA — The incomes of Canada’s top 1% grew at a faster pace than everyone else in 2017 — and, overall, they saw their taxes edge down, a new study says.

Statistics Canada has found that in 2017, the average total income of all tax-filers rose 2.5% to $48,400 compared to the previous year. The average income growth of the bottom half of tax filers increased 2.4 % to $17,200.

But those in the top 1% saw average income growth that year of 8.5% to $477,700.

And the biggest surge in income growth was seen by those who made even more money.

Tax filers in Canada’s top 0.1%, who made at least $740,300 in 2017, took home 17.2% more income than in 2016. People in the top 0.01%, who made $2.7 million or more, saw their incomes rise 27.2% — making for the fourth-biggest annual increase in the last 35 years.

During the election campaign, major political parties have announced packages of tax credits and reductions, mostly directed at families.

For example, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer announced a $6-billion plan to gradually lower income taxes — to 13.75% from 15% — over several years for the lowest federal bracket, which is applied on income between $11,809 and $47,630.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau promised to make the first $15,000 of income tax-free for people making $147,667 a year or less.