AUSTRALIA - Superannuation fund associations have demanded clarity in company policies over market transparency and disclosure.
A statement from the two organisations said: "IFSA and ACSI are interested in ensuring that regulation is directed at maintaining the highest levels of market integrity, without compromising market efficiency or inhibiting the adoption of new technologies."
The statement outlined issues to be tackled and practices the pair would like to see adopted which would affect the market and superannuation investors.
These points included director trading, short selling and securities lending and voting rights.
The statement said: "IFSA and ACSI, along with other market participants, commissioned a report to consider how securities lending affects an asset owner's ability to vote its shares and what is the most efficient way to protect voting entitlements.
It added both were against 'vote renting' where an investor would borrow shares to influence the outcome of a shareholder vote.
"The most effective way of minimising the risks of vote renting or the unintended loss of voting entitlements through securities lending is to ensure that asset owners lending securities are able to recall their stock and thus maintain their full voting entitlements," the statement concluded.
Nick Sherry, minister for superannuation and corporate law refused to be drawn on the topic during an interview on national radio.
When asked about the collapse of Opes Prime, a Melbourne broker which invested on behalf of a significant amount of private superannuation schemes, the minister said it would be inappropriate to comment.
Instead, Sherry urged Australians to not overreact to the relatively low returns they were likely to find in their superannuation account statements in the next few weeks.
Sherry said: "In the past four to five years, what has to be remembered is that funds have had rates of return, generally between 10 to 15% positive, so we have had the strongest five year rates of return…than we've seen over the past 20 years."
He said although superannuation return rates had been 'exceptional', this type of investing should be looked at in the long term.
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