AUSTRALIA - Super funds are "on track" for another year of double digit returns, indicated the findings of the most recent Intech Super Survey.
The survey, which measures the performance of 200 superannuation funds across five risk
categories on a net of tax and investment-related fees and expenses basis, found the median growth-oriented super fund had returned 2.9% in the March quarter.
The Intech report stated that with the 2006/2007 financial year drawing to a close and the median returns remaining in double digits, super investors were “looking at potentially another strong financial year return for 2006/2007”.
The survey noted that real returns to investors had been further improved by the recent low headline inflation results. The median growth-oriented super fund has returned 10.9% in real terms for the year to date.
In other Australian news, Watson Wyatt has passed comment on treasurer Peter Costello’s recent budget announcements concerning pensions.
Costello said earlier this week the government would make a one-off payment into the superannuation accounts of those people who made eligible contributions in the 2005-2006 income year.
During his budget speech, Costello claimed this payment would double the co-contribution paid in respect of that year, and contribute an additional $A1.1bn to the retirement savings of low to middle income earning Australians.
However, Andrew Boal, managing director of Watson Wyatt in Australia, said there was still a “significant opportunity for the government to encourage increased voluntary savings, to supplement the income already sourced from the Superannuation Guarantee and the Age Pension".
This echoes the sentiment expressed by the Association of Superannuation funds of Australia (ASFA), which criticised the government’s one-off payment into superannuation accounts as a missed opportunity to change future savings behaviour.
The Environment Agency Pension Fund (EAPF) has joined a coalition of 88 investors to demand companies disclose more information on environmental impact.
The cross industry guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) equalisation working group has formed five sub-committees to each work on a key component of the guidance.
KAS Bank has launched an end-to-end cost transparency solution for defined contribution (DC) schemes to assist in the delivery of chair's statements.