D-Day for dud superannuation funds

Original article by Michael Read
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 1-Jul-21

Superannuation Minister Jane Hume says the federal government’s new online tool aims to encourage superannuation fund members to exit underperforming funds. The YourSuper tool will be launched on 1 July, and will initially allow super fund members to rank and compare default funds based on their performance over six years. The tool will be expanded to include the majority of non-default funds in mid-2022. The tool can be accessed via the MyGov portal or the Australian Tax Office’s website. It is part of the ‘Your Future, Your Super’ reforms.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FINANCE, AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE

Taxes down, super up from today

Original article by Michael Read
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 13 : 1-Jul-21

The corporate tax rate for small and medium enterprises with turnover of less than $50m will be reduced by one per cent to 25 per cent on 1 July. Other changes that take effect at the start of the new financial year include an extension of the low- and middle-income tax offset and an increase in the superannuation guarantee from 9.5 per cent to 10 per cent. The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia estimates that the super change will boost the retirement income of the average worker by about $19,000. New measures aimed at first-home buyers also take effect on 1 July.

CORPORATES
THE ASSOCIATION OF SUPERANNUATION FUNDS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED

Bosses and unions unite to urge senator’s vote against seriously flawed super reform bill

Original article by Patrick Commins
The Australian – Page: 7 : 7-Jun-21

The ACTU and the Australian Industry Group have joined forces to call for the ‘Your Super, Your Future’ legislation to be rejected by the Senate. They contend that the bill still has some major flaws; it recently passed the lower house following the removal of provisions which allow the federal government to veto investments made by superannuation funds that are not deemed to be in members’ best interests. Amongst other things, the ACTU and the Ai Group are concerned that the bill will result in people being stuck in underperforming super funds.

CORPORATES
ACTU, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP

‘Ideology gone mad’: Silk slams super veto laws

Original article by Cliona O’Dowd
The Australian – Page: 17 : 9-Apr-21

AustralianSuper CEO Ian Silk has criticised key elements of the federal government’s proposed superannuation reforms. He is particularly concerned about provisions of the ‘Your Future, Your Super’ bill which allow the government to block an investment by a super fund, even if it is in members’ best financial interests. Silk says that amongst other things, this raises genuine concerns about sovereign risk. David Knox of consultancy firm Mercer in turn warns that subjecting super funds to performance tests will result in lower returns over the longer term, as trustees will be reluctant to invest in some asset classes.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIANSUPER PTY LTD, MERCER INVESTMENTS PTY LTD

Proposed super changes anti industry funds

Original article by Glenda Korporaal
The Australian – Page: Online : 5-Jan-21

ACTU assistant secretary Scott Connolly claims the federal government’s Your Future, Your Super legislation will disadvantage the $750 billion industry superannuation fund sector. Connolly notes proposed investment performance comparisons for "low-budget" MySuper accounts only include investment returns and exclude administration fees. He says industry funds typically charger lower administration fees, and Connolly claims the federal government is favouring for-profit super funds under the legislation. The proposed investment performance comparisons in the legislation currently only apply to the low budget MySuper sector, which industry super funds currently dominate.

CORPORATES
ACTU

More than $1b wrongly taken out of super

Original article by Ronald Mizen
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 4-Jan-21

Just under $36 billion had been withdrawn from superannuation under the federal government’s coronavirus early release scheme when the scheme closed at midnight on 1 January. The Australian Taxation Office has estimated that over $1 billion could have been incorrectly withdrawn by people who were not eligible for the scheme, but the ATO has noted that compliance with the scheme was very high. Superannuation Minister Senator Jane Hume contends the pandemic has made people pay more attention to how their super is being managed, but critics of the scheme claim it will have an adverse impact on people’s retirement savings.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FINANCE

Super withdrawals hit $32bn as rush slows

Original article by Lachlan Moffet Gray
The Australian – Page: 15 : 8-Sep-20

Data from the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority shows that $32.6bn has now been withdrawn from superannuation funds via the federal government’s early access scheme. However, there is evidence to suggest that the rate of withdrawals is slowing, with just $380m paid out to fund members in the week to 30 August. This is the lowest weekly total since the scheme began. Meanwhile, Brendan Coates of the Grattan Institute says the scheme’s impact on retirement income has been overstated, although ACTU president Michele O’Neil disagrees with this view.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY, GRATTAN INSTITUTE, ACTU

Early access to super extended, Treasury reveals

Original article by Adrian Flores
My Business – Page: Online : 24-Jul-20

The federal government has extended the deadline for people wanting to apply for the early release of up to $10,000 from their superannuation fund from 24 September to 31 December. The government has also advised that the COVID-19 SME Guarantee Scheme has been extended to loans written until 30 June 2021, and that the Supporting Apprentices and Trainees wage subsidy has been extended for an additional six months to 31 March 2021, as well as being broadened to cover medium-sized businesses from 1 July.

CORPORATES

Funds face more outflows: APRA

Original article by Samantha Bailey
The Australian – Page: 15 : 7-Jul-20

Data from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority shows that superannuation fund members have now withdrawn some $18.1bn via the federal government’s early access scheme. APRA expects the new financial year to prompt another surge in applications to withdraw money from super funds. People who have experienced financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic can withdraw up to $10,000 from their super fund in both the 2019-20 and 2020-21 financial years.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY

Early access super requests near $15bn

Original article by Gerard Cockburn
The Australian – Page: 15 : 16-Jun-20

Data from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority shows that 2.12 million people have applied to withdraw money from their superannuation fund via the federal government’s early access scheme. Some $14.8bn has been paid out to 1.98 million fund members; AustralianSuper heads the list, having paid out $1.98bn to 264,404 members. The early access scheme has been criticised by the ACTU in a submission to a Senate committee hearing into the federal government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY, AUSTRALIANSUPER PTY LTD, ACTU