Panama Papers Release Reveals Top Tax Avoiding Australian Areas

What do Geraldton, WA and Mackay in Queensland have in common? Well, apart from being remote coastal towns, they also appear surprisingly often in the Panama Papers – the leak of Panamanian firm Mossack Fonseca’s customer data.

The Panama Papers contain a wealth of fascinating revelations about Australians and their relationship with offshore tax havens. There are, of course, many legitimate reasons to retain a Panamanian law firm, and we are not implying any wrongdoing by the companies and individuals revealed in the documents.

There are 1409 Australian addresses listed in the Panama Papers, with state capitals featuring heavily. ┬áThere were only a handful of addresses in all of the ACT, SA, NT and Tasmania, so we’ll skip the top lists there.

NSW Top 10 Postcodes
Postcode Suburb Addresses
2000 Sydney CBD 51
2067 Chatswood 12
2065 St Leonards 9
2028 Double Bay 9
2121 Epping 9
2072 Gordon 9
2118 Carlingford 7
2220 Hurstville 7
2030 Vaucluse 7
2070 Lindfield 6

Sydney, 2000 is the nation’s most included postcode, being home to scores of legal and accounting firms. Notable for NSW though, is that the North Shore areas of Chatswood, St Leonards, Gordon and Lindfield are so highly represented, relative to only a few addresses in the affluent Eastern suburbs. Hurstville and Carlingford also make somewhat unexpected frequent appearances in the Mossack Fonseca customer database.

QLD Top 10 Postcodes
Postcode Suburb Addresses
4211 Nerang 21
4217 Surfers Paradise 13
4740 Mackay 10
4109 Sunnybank 9
4069 Brookfield 9
4227 Reedy Creek 8
4214 Arundel 8
4000 Brisbane 7
4113 Eight Mile Plains 7
4215 Southport 7

 

In QLD it’s the Gold Coast which dominates the top postcodes. Nerang, Surfers Paradise, Reedy Creek, Arundel, Eight Mile Plains and Southport fill the top postcodes. Sunnybank, Brookfield and Brisbane CBD are the Brisbane areas mentioned in the records, along with geographic outlier of Mackay appearing in 10 customer accounts.

Victoria Top 10 Postcodes
Postcode Suburb Addresses
3000 Melbourne 19
3186 Brighton 7
3142 Toorak 6
3122 Hawthorn 6
3004 Melbourne 6
3103 Balwyn 5
3079 Ivanhoe 4
3101 Kew 4
3124 Camberwell 4
3109 Doncaster 4

 

Victoria’s top suburbs are a more predictable tour of the inner east, from Ivanhoe down to Brighton, from Toorak across to Doncaster. Overall Victoria has fewer addresses than NSW or Queensland, with even WA showing more offshoring interest.

 

WA Top 10 Postcodes
Postcode Suburb Addresses
6530 Geraldton 15
6000 Perth 14
6005 Kings Park 9
6150 Bateman 8
6011 Cottesloe 8
6153 Applecross 7
6012 Mosman Park 7
6009 Nedlands 7
6008 Subiaco 6
6010 Swanbourne 6

 

WA’s surprise offshoring hotspot is Geraldton. The city is home to 15 residential addresses listed in the leak, which is more than Perth’s central 6000 postcode. Perth’s inner suburbs have a fairly even distribution of offshoring addresses after Geraldton.
The leaks are now fully searchable online at the IJIC Offshore Leaks website. The data can be viewed by suburb or even by street address.

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Technical Lead at Microburbs.com.au. Data analyst, software developer and technology manager. Previously IT Director of Australian hedge funds and algorithmic trading operations.

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