Lift super to 12pc to defuse age time bomb

Original article by Richard Gluyas
The Australian – Page: 21 : 22-Nov-19

AustralianSuper CEO Ian Silk appeared before federal parliament’s economics committee on 21 November, where he emphasised the need to increase the superannuation guarantee from 9.5 per cent to 12 per cent. He warned that the legislated increase is necessary to avert the ‘economic time bomb’ of the nation’s ageing population, arguing that the pension system alone is not sufficient to provide Australians with a comfortable retirement. Silk also expressed support for consolidation in the super sector, and the exit of funds that consistently underperform.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIANSUPER PTY LTD, AUSTRALIA. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES STANDING COMMITTEE ON ECONOMICS, INDUSTRY SUPER AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA

Super funds approach double-digit returns, but Chant West urges caution

Original article by David Rogers
The Australian – Page: 27 : 19-Nov-19

Data from Chant West shows that superannuation funds have achieved an average return of 14.3 per cent so far in 2019. The median growth fund gained 12.8 per cent in the first 10 months of the calendar year, after eking out a gain of 0.4 per cent in October. Mano Mohankumar of Chant West says the median growth fund appears to be on track to deliver a double-digit return in 2019, although he warns that the strong returns since the global financial crisis are not sustainable.

CORPORATES
CHANT WEST FINANCIAL SERVICES PTY LTD, SUPERRATINGS PTY LTD

Satisfaction with performance of Industry Super Funds remains ahead of Retail Funds for 17th year

Original article by Roy Morgan
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 29-Oct-19

New research by Roy Morgan shows that satisfaction with the financial performance of Retail superannuation funds was only 58.7% in the six months to September 2019, compared to 64.1% for Industry Funds and 76.7% for Self-Managed Funds. Retail Fund satisfaction has lagged behind satisfaction with Industry Funds for the last 17 years. These are the latest findings from the September 2019 Roy Morgan Research ‘Superannuation Satisfaction’ report based on around 50,000 interviews with people per annum, including over 30,000 who have superannuation.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED

Westpac lashed in advice ruling

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 17 & 21 : 29-Oct-19

The Federal Court has upheld the Australian Securities & Investments Commission’s appeal against a December 2018 judgment in favour of Westpac. The case had centred on Westpac’s use of cold-calling to urge its customers to switch their superannuation accounts from other providers to its BT subsidiary, and whether this constituted the provision of general or personal advice. Westpac could face a financial penalty of up to $15m if it decides not to appeal the ruling.

CORPORATES
WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, BT FINANCIAL GROUP PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Kelty unleashes super spray at Swan

Original article by Joanna Mather
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 25-Oct-19

Former ACTU secretary Bill Kelty referred to Wayne Swan as a "miserable bastard" at the launch of the Crescent Think Tank on 24 October. Kelty’s description of the former Labor treasurer was on account of him only increasing the superannuation guarantee by 0.5 per cent during Labor’s six years in office. Kelty and former Labor prime minister Paul Keating are pushing for the SG to be increased to 12 per cent, although some Liberal MPs and the Grattan Institute have called for it to be paused at 9.5 per cent. Kelty says suggestions that deferring SG increases will cause employers to increase wages are "laughable".

CORPORATES
ACTU, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, GRATTAN INSTITUTE

Multiple super accounts cost $2.6bn a year

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 7 : 25-Oct-19

Superannuation fund members pay a combined $32bn in fees each year, including some $2.6bn in fees on lost and forgotten super accounts. Data from the Australian Taxation Office highlights the issue of multiple super accounts; some 23 per cent of the nation’s 16 million workers have two super accounts, while eight per cent have three and one per cent have six or more super accounts. The ATO also notes that more Australians have opted to consolidate their super accounts over the last five years.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE, AUSTRALIA. PRODUCTIVITY COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

Federal super blowout at $50bn

Original article by Geoff Chambers
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 22-Oct-19

The Department of Finance has released data showing that the federal government’s unfunded superannuation liability topped $233.1bn at the end of 2018-19, compared with $183.1bn at the start of the financial year. Meanwhile, the Future Fund’s assets rose to $165.7bn in the year to September. The Future Fund Act allows the government to begin withdrawing money from the sovereign wealth fund in 2020 to meet unfunded super liabilities, although the Coalition has renewed a 2017 commitment to not do so.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FINANCE, AUSTRALIA. FUTURE FUND MANAGEMENT AGENCY, AUSTRALIA. OFFICE OF THE AUDITOR-GENERAL

Super fees twice as high for under 35s

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 6 : 10-Oct-19

Rainmaker Information Services has released a report which shows that workers who are under the age of 35 pay an average fee of 2.3 per cent, compared with just 1.2 per cent for those aged 35+. The report also contends that male workers pay an average of 1.1 per cent in super fees, compared with 1.3 per cent for female workers. Alex Dunnin of Rainmaker stresses that super funds are not overcharging or ripping members off; rather, the super industry has not been designed with young workers and those with low balances in mind.

CORPORATES
RAINMAKER INFORMATION SERVICES PTY LTD, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FINANCE

Super fee gap shrinking as retail funds catch up

Original article by Joanna Mather
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 9-Oct-19

Data from Rainmaker shows that the superannuation industry’s fees fell by about four per cent in 2018-19, to $31.8bn. It was the first decline in fees since 2014, with retail super funds recording the biggest fall. Rainmaker notes that as a result, the traditional fee gap between retail and industry super funds has narrowed to almost zero. This is particularly so in the case of MySuper funds; the average fee for non-profit MySuper products is now 1.15 per cent, compared with an average of 1.17 per cent for retail MySuper products.

CORPORATES
RAINMAKER INFORMATION SERVICES PTY LTD

Brawl over voluntary super push

Original article by John Kehoe
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 30-Sep-19

SMSF Association chair Deborah Ralston was recently named as a members of the federal government’s review of the retirement income system. It has been revealed that Ralston wrote to Treasurer Josh Frydenberg in early July. Amongst other things, she suggested that compulsory superannuation contributions could become voluntary for people on low incomes and young workers, a proposal that has been criticised by Industry Super Australia chairman Greg Combet. Ralston also called for the abolition of tax concessions for large super balances and questioned the need to increase the super guarantee from 9.5 per cent to 12 per cent.

CORPORATES
SMSF ASSOCIATION, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, MONASH UNIVERSITY, INDUSTRY SUPER AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, ACTU, ALLIANCE FOR A FAIRER RETIREMENT SYSTEM, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET