6 in 10 Australians don’t believe they’ll have enough super

Alison Banney 7 August 2017 NEWS

Retired 738

Australians believe they'll need $1.142 million in savings to retire comfortably.

More than half of Australians believe they will not have enough money in superannuation to retire on according to the latest MLC Quarterly Australian Wealth Behaviour survey released today. What's more alarming is 1 in 3 Australians believe they'll have "far from enough", which has increased from 1 in 4 against this time last year, suggesting increased concern over our nest eggs (or lack thereof).

Women are more pessimistic than men, with 62% expecting to not have enough in retirement compared to 52% of men. This is unsurprising considering women retire with around half the amount in super as men. Findings by Association of Superannuation Funds Australia released just last month revealed men retire with an average super balance of $292,500 compared to $138,150 for women.

However neither balance is in line with what Australians think they need in savings to retire comfortably: $1,142,000. It is also not in line with what Australians expect to retire with: $638,000 in savings, excluding the family home.

MLC's survey also revealed the type of retirement Australians want to have versus what they expected to have, and the results are quite negative. When asked about the retirement we want, common words used were "relaxed", "travel", "comfort" and 'freedom". When describing the type of retirement we expect to have, words including "frugal", "stressful", "worried" and "struggle" were used.

“While economic indicators are quite strong, at an individual level it’s apparent that Australians aren’t feeling confident about their finances, and this may be causing anxiety about retirement,” said MLC general manager of customer experience, superannuation, Lara Bourguignon.

“What’s interesting is that respondents said they need over $1 million to retire on, but even small super balances help in retirement, so instead of being worried and fearful, people should feel motivated and empowered to take the little steps that make a big difference.”

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