Super fund members fall short of retirement goals

Peter Terlato 11 November 2016

Financial advice

30% doubt they'll have enough to retire comfortably.

The majority of Australian superannuation fund members are unsure or doubtful whether they will have enough money to support themselves in retirement, according to new research.

The Investment Trends 2016 Member Sentiment and Communication Report surveyed 20,800 super fund members across Australia, revealing less than one-third (30%) of customers are "somewhat confident" they could fund their retirement future using their superannuation savings. Less than one in ten are "confident" they'll have enough finances.

One quarter of respondents (25%) are "not sure", two in ten (20%) are "a bit nervous" and a smaller proportion (15%) are "not at all confident", according to the report.

More than a quarter of fund members admit to seeking help in order to grow their super balance.

However, just 900,000 members switched funds in the last 12 months, 11% less than in 2015 and the lowest rate (7% of all fund members) in seven years. A smaller proportion (5%) are considering a switch, with around one-third citing high fees as the primary reason to jump.

The survey also found that while customer interest in superannuation tends to peak at 40, younger members are wishing to interact with their fund through a variety of channels.

"Gen Ys who care to engage with their super want to access it the same way they access all the other services they use, including via social media and online chat services,” Investment Trends senior analyst King Loong Choi said.

“The sheer range of engagement channels and approaches that need to be considered to engage younger members present a significant challenge for many super funds, if only on an expense level."

The fintech revolution is growing and there is a need for financial institutions to take aggressive action to prepare for the future. There is scope for a fundamental, disruptive shift in financial business models.

Self-managed super funds are diversifying investment options in hopes of generating steady returns.

Some people are even investing in miniature toy bricks and pieces.

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