The federal government boasts of its aid payments to citizens in advertisements these days. Various measures are highlighted under the slogan “We relieve Germany”.
These include the energy price lump sum of 300 euros, which was already paid out to employed persons and pensioners in September and December, the reduction in value-added tax on gas that has been in effect since October and the assumption of the December discount for all gas customers by the state.
And in 2023 it will continue like this: Compensation for the cold progression, higher child benefits and the price brakes for gas and electricity are among the most important changes. The measures decided so far add up to a total volume of more than 200 billion euros by spring 2024.
The aid is distributed very differently among private households. This is shown by calculations by the German Economic Institute (IW), which are exclusively available to WELT. "Households with children will receive above-average relief, since the increase in child benefit is remarkable at 14 percent," says IW expert Martin Beznoska.
A family with two children, for example, in which both parents work, with a joint gross income of 90,000 euros will have 235 euros more money available per month in the coming year - calculated for the year it is an additional 2831 euros.
This corresponds to 3.1 percent of gross income. If the household income is 60,000 euros in the next year, the total relief adds up to around 202 euros a month or 2418 euros a year. That is four percent of gross income.
An average energy consumption that increases with higher income was assumed. The experts assumed the price for a kilowatt hour of electricity to be 50 cents and for a kilowatt hour of gas 20 cents.
In addition, from 2023 there will be a higher basic allowance and new benchmark values for the income tax rate, pension contributions will be completely tax-free and the employee lump sum will be increased.
In addition, child benefit will be increased by up to 14 percent to EUR 250 per child. Part of the positive net effect is offset by higher social security contributions.
For single parents, the relief for incomes between 36,000 euros and 54,000 euros is between 100 euros and 120 euros a month, according to the IW – or up to 1300 euros a year.
For singles with a gross salary of 30,000 euros per year, it is a good 50 euros more per month. Whoever has a gross income of 72,000 euros will be relieved by almost 110 euros in 2023.
The distribution of aid across all income brackets has been the subject of criticism for months. “What is clear is that high-income households benefit more in absolute terms because they pay more taxes and use more energy. As a result, relief also weighs heavier,” says Beznoska.
In his view, the distinction between absolute and relative relief is important in the discussion. "In relative terms, households with low incomes benefit more from the measures," says Beznoska. It is clear that for all households, the 2023 relief will only compensate for part of the inflation.
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