Mercer Wealth: Global consulting leader in retirement

Not sure which superannuation fund to go with? Take a look at what Mercer Wealth has to offer.

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Mercer Wealth

In 1945, Mercer Wealth began operations in the form of William M. Mercer, Ltd.

This Canadian business soon became a leading provider of actuarial and benefits consulting services. In 1959, Marsh & McLennan Companies acquired this business to merge it with its own employee benefits department.

Growth and acquisitions led to significant expansion, with Mercer going on to become a global leader in investments, retirement, health and talent. Mercer now has clients in 140 markets the world over.

In 2013, Mercer received authorisation from the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (APRA) to offer its MySuper product, including the Mercer SmartPath investment portfolio.

What awards and honours has Mercer Wealth earned?

  • FST Media Awards, 2015. Mercer named Superannuation fund management provider of the year.
  • Chant West | Conexus Financial Super Fund Awards, 2014. Mercer SmartPath awarded Best Fund.

A closer look at Mercer Wealth

Mercer has over 20,000 employees based in 43 countries, offering services to clients in 140 nations. In Australia, it has more than 225 employer plans and around 214,000 members, making it one of the country’s leading corporate master trusts. It made its MySuper product available to Australians on 1st December 2013.

Mercer provides services to Australian corporations, multinational corporations, endowments and foundations, affinity groups and the public sector. It also offers wealth management and private equity advice. The industries it caters to come from diverse realms that include energy, insurance, healthcare, financial services, higher education and retail.

If you choose Mercer’s MySuper product, you can opt for a ready-made investment portfolio crafted by experts or you can take matters into your own hands. You can also turn to Mercer for a suitable pension solution.

What’s the online banking experience like for Mercer Wealth?

As a Mercer Wealth member you get access to its secure online platform. You can use this system to check your fund’s balance and view details about contributions. The website also offers a retirement income simulator, using which you can get an idea about how much money you’ll need down the road.

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What super funds are offered by Mercer Wealth?

Mercer’s MySuper product lets you choose between two options.

  • Mercer Smartpath. This option lets you follow a set-and-forget strategy, where smart algorithms adjust your investment strategy as you grow older, working in balancing investment risk with life stage. Strategies developed by experts in the field help it respond suitably to changing market conditions.

Mercer SmartPath, unlike various other lifecycle options, makes changes to asset allocation until you turn 85. The retirement income remains exempt from tax, which is why you invest more in ‘tax-aware’ Australian share strategies during your retirement years.

Since maintaining some exposure to growth assets is important for retirees, the returns you earn after retirement account for around two thirds of your retirement income. Resultantly, Mercer invests more heavily in growth assets post retirement when compared to other life cycle options.

  • Mercer Direct. If you wish to take control of your own investments, the Mercer Direct portfolio might work well for you. This option lets you use part of your super balance to invest in areas you may not be able to do otherwise with a super fund, For example, you can consider investing in ASX shares as well as a range of exchange traded funds (ETFs), where you get to trade in real time. You can also think about investing some money in terms deposits offered by National Australia Bank, ME Bank and Macquarie Bank.

You need at least $20,000 to qualify. In addition, not all plans in the Mercer Super Trust can avail of Mercer Direct. Members get an easy to understand consolidated investment summary.

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What pension accounts are offered by Mercer Wealth?

Mercer offers a pension solution called the Allocated Pension Division (APD), designed to provide a regular, flexible and tax-effective post-retirement income.

  • How it works. You need $10,000 in your super to open an APD account. While you receive pension payments regularly, Mercer invests the balance in your account to help maximise your savings. You can choose to receive pension payments on a weekly, monthly, quarterly or annual basis. The earnings from investments in APD are tax-exempted, which means you stand to gain more. If you invest some of your money in ASX listed shares through the Mercer Direct option, any capital gains you realise are also exempt from tax. Pension payments after you turn 60 years of age don’t attract any tax.
  • Benefits. You get to choose from more than 40 investment options, which include Mercer Direct and LifetimePlus. You can manage your account using the Internet at any time. If you need help with any question, you can contact Mercer’s dedicated helpline over the phone. Updating beneficiary details is easy. If you’re an existing Mercer member, transitioning to the pension division is seamless.
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What you need to know before you apply

You can become a Mercer Wealth super fund member in your individual capacity or through your employer. If you wish to apply as an individual you can submit an online application. If an offer for a Mercer corporate plan comes from your employer, you don’t have to apply online. You can become a Mercer Wealth super fund member at various stages.

  • When you join the workforce
  • When you’re switching between jobs
  • If you’re planning for retirement

To become a member of the individual section of the plan you have to meet some requirements.

  • You are investing a minimum on $1,000
  • You have a tax file number

After your account is open you can update and change the following details online or over the phone.

  • Personal details
  • Communication preferences
  • Investment options
  • Insurance
  • Details of beneficiaries

While the Mercer Wealth superannuation fund lets you choose from different investment options, other superannuation providers offer similar variety as well. Therefore, it’s best that you compare a few before deciding.

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