An empirical study of demographics of perceptions of tax evasion in New Zealand
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For the first time in New Zealand, this study investigates the relationship between perceptions of tax evasion as a crime and a comprehensive set of demographic variables in New Zealand. A questionnaire survey was administered to 315 respondents in the Auckland region. This research analyses the association between demographic variables and the perceptions of tax evasion using analysis of variance and analysis of correlation variance techniques, rigorous data analysis techniques that enable reliable inferences to be drawn from the study. The findings reveal that the most significant variables that affect tax evasion are education level, employment status, gender, residential location of the respondent, the audit of an income tax return by the Inland Revenue Department, first language and status as a tax professional. The results suggest that to address tax evasion the Inland Revenue Department should target taxpayers with some (or all) of the following characteristics: a low level of education, male, self-employed, those who have not been audited in the past, those who live in rural urban areas, those whose first language is English and those who are tax professionals.