Superannuation

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Industry funds bleed as early super withdrawals top $12b

APRA has released its weekly update on the federal government’s early superannuation release policy, which reveals that another $1,590 million funds were withdrawn in the week ending 24 May, with total withdrawals topping $12.2 billion: As illustrated above, just over 1.6 million applications have been paid averaging $7,252. Breaking down withdrawals at the individual fund

15

Blind Labor robs workers with 12% superannuation

Despite Australian workers facing massive income declines, Labor continues to lobby hard for the superannuation guarantee (SG) to be lifted to 12%: Senior Labor figures said compulsory super, which originated under the Hawke government’s accord process in the 1980s, should be protected as the Morrison government forged a new compact with unions and business to

48

Australia’s superannuation system drives inequality

Robert Lechte, a welfare-state advocate living in Melbourne, believes that Australia’s superannuation system “enshrines inequality”: Like other market-based schemes, superannuation has reinforced and accelerated existing inequalities. Because super is primarily funded by employer contributions, it is self-evidently terrible for the unemployed or those out of paid work due to disability, sickness, or caregiving. They earn

24

Industry funds pummeled by early superannuation withdrawals

The Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (APRA) has released its weekly update on the Morrison Government’s early release policy, which reveals that another 1,650 million funds were withdrawn in the week ending 17 May, with total withdrawals topping $10.6 billion: As shown above, just over 1.4 million applications have been paid averaging $7,322. Looking at the

12

Use COVID-19 to drive superannuation reform

MacroBusiness has gone to great lengths over many years to explain why Australia’s compulsory superannuation system is not a genuine retirement pillar and is ripe for reform. This comes despite us offering a superannuation fund via our partners at Nucleus Wealth. Thus, we are effectively talking against our own book. We see five fundamental problems

16

Raising superannuation guarantee will jeopardise budget

An interesting debate emerged at The AFR yesterday with regards to Australia’s compulsory superannuation system. Pitcher Partners director, Brad Twentyman, proposed allowing workers to cash out half of their superannuation contributions over the next 18 months in order to lift disposable income and save the federal budget around $10 billion: [It] would be “one of

9

Early superannuation release smashes industry funds

The Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (APRA) has updated its data on the Morrison Government’s early release of superannuation policy, which reveals that just under $9 billion of payments have been made on nearly 1.2 million applications at an average payment of $7,242: Looking deeper into the data, we see that industry superannuation funds have dominated

15

Industry superannuation funds scream “sovereign risk”

Industry superannuation funds claim the Morrison Government’s early release policy has raised “sovereign risk” and will hamper returns in the future: “Clearly the government has changed the rules and super funds now need to factor in sovereign risk [the danger of governments acting precipitously],” [HostPlus CEO David Elia] said. “That means funds will carry higher

1

Industry superannuation funds spin web of lies

After vigorously attacking the Morrison Government’s early superannuation release policy, Industry Super Australia (ISA) was accused of exaggerating the impact of this scheme on younger Australians’ retirement savings. Specifically, ISA ran an advertising campaign claiming that a 30 year old worker could lose up to $100,000 in retirement savings if they withdrew $20,000 from their

11

Superannuation funds use COVID-19 to lift fees

One of the biggest knocks on Australia’s compulsory superannuation system is the exorbitant management fee structure. As noted in the Murray Financial System Inquiry, Australia’s superannuation management fees are among the very highest in the world despite having one of the biggest pools of funds under management (FUM): This defies the notion of ‘economies of

3

Industry funds dominate early superannuation withdrawals

The Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (APRA) has released new data on the temporary release of superannuation. Key highlights include: 1,080,000 applications have been received to released superannuation early of which 830,000 have been paid; and $6.3 billion has been paid to members with an average withdrawal per member of $7,629. APRA has also released individual

18

COVID-19 has killed 12% superannuation

For years MacroBusiness has argued that Australia’s superannuation guarantee (SG) should not be raised from the current level of 9.5% to 12%. Our arguments against lifting the SG centre around four key issues. First, superannuation concessions are grossly inequitable and favour high income earners. This inequity is illustrated clearly by the below Australian Treasury chart,

26

No industry superannuation fund withdrawals for you!

The Morrison Government has advised that 1.2 million people have now applied to withdraw a total of nearly $10 billion from their superannuation fund via its early access scheme: As of late Wednesday, 1.19 million Australians had applied for the early release of $9.8 billion, according to Treasury figures… Treasury has forecast that about $30

17

Industry Superannuation funds caught naked on liquidity

One month ago, Australia’s industry super funds were begging for a “liquidity backstop facility” from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) after the Morrison Government announced that it give cash-strapped Aussies early access to $20,000 of superannuation savings: Some funds, led by the union-and-employer-controlled industry sector, want the government to underwrite a “liquidity backstop facility”

35

Australia’s superannuation bubble bursts

For nearly 30 years, Australia’s compulsory superannuation system has provided strong tailwinds for the Australian share market. Since compulsory superannuation was first introduced in 1992, mandatory contributions have grown from 3% of employee wages to 9.5% currently. In turn, this strong inflow of contributions caused superannuation funds under management to grow almost exponentially, as evidenced

19

Unlisted property burns superannuation funds

According to The AFR, industry superannuation fund Hostplus had sought a $1.5 billion cash redemption from unlisted commercial property investor trust ISPT. However, ISPT has rejected its request. Hostplus may now try to sell its units to other investors in ISPT, although just $20 million in units were transferred between investors in the 2019 financial

3

Industry superannuation funds kicked from pillar to post

Liberal MPs have taken aim at Industry Super Australia (ISA) for exaggerating the impact of the Government’s early release policy on member withdrawals. The Australian Treasury estimated that up to $27 billion would be withdrawn from the nation’s superannuation accounts, whereas the industry forecast that between $50 billion and $65 billion could be withdrawn. To

21

Superannuation industry’s self-entitlement knows no bounds

When it comes to self-entitlement, you would be hard pressed beating Australia’s superannuation industry. Industry superannuation funds were first to attack the Morrison Government’s decision to allow financially strapped Australians to access $20,000 of their own superannuation savings early, which continues to this day: “If it’s seen as a regular opportunity to dip into [super]

27

Industry superannuation funds disemboweled by young Aussies

According to The AFR, nearly one million Australians have already registered their interest to access up to $20,000 of emergency funds from their superannuation accounts, representing nearly two-thirds of the Morrison Government’s forecast of 1.6 million people: A total of 975,300 super members registered early interest in the ATO scheme before the April 20 start

7

Goldman: Shares to fall as superannuation ‘Ponzi scheme’ unravels

Matthew Ross of Goldman Sachs estimates that up to $44 billion could be withdrawn from superannuation funds by people who have been financially hit by the pandemic. This is based on 10% of superannuation members withdrawing $20,000 of funds. Ross’ estimate compares to the federal government’s forecast withdrawals of $27 billion and the superannuation industry’s

32

Industry superannuation panic merchants liquidate assets

When the Morrison Government first announced that financially struggling Australians would be allowed to access $20,000 in superannuation savings early, industry superannuation funds were in uproar claiming the policy undermines the compulsory system and would strain their liquidity. Shortly afterwards, these same industry funds pleaded for emergency liquidity support from the Reserve Bank of Australia

11

Kings of industry superannuation deign to return members’ funds

Greg Combet – the chair of Industry Super Australia and IFM Investors – continues to talk his own book on superannuation, promising to “help” members access their savings while warning policy makers against any further changes that would undermine the system: Superannuation assets exceed Australia’s annual nominal GDP, as well as the market capitalisation of

33

Industry superannuation funds face obliteration

Over the weekend, it was revealed that nearly 900,000 Australians have registered their interest to withdraw part of their superannuation nest eggs early. This follows the Morrison Government’s announcement last month permitting those suffering from financial hardship to withdraw $20,000 from their superannuation savings, beginning from 20 April. The number of applications for early release

23

Greedy Labor hoards superannuation trillions

In a video interview with Sky News, Labor backbencher Ed Husic lambasted the Morrison Government’s policy of allowing Australians in financial stress to access $20,000 of their superannuation savings, labelling it “highly irresponsible” and an attempt to drive an “ideological sword” through the superannuation system: “This is going to have a huge impact on retirement

39

Investors stampede superannuation exits

Liberal Senator Jane Hume, Assistant Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and Financial Technology, appeared on Ray Hadley’s Morning Show (audio below) where she disclosed that 743,000 Australians have already registered for early release of their superannuation. This comes after the Morrison Government last month announced that it would permit Australians experiencing financial hardship to access

13

Let the market judge industry superannuation funds

It has been a sobering month for Australia’s industry superannuation funds, which have been attacked from almost every angle. The harshest attacks have come from Coalition MPs.  Assistant Superannuation Minister, Jane Hume, accused industry superannuation funds of having a “structural weakness… that has been hiding in plain sight” in relation to their over-exposure to unlisted

22

No bailout for industry superannuation desperados

Via the ABC: Nearly 618,000 Australians have applied to get an early release of their superannuation under the Federal Government’s plan to help people out of work and facing financial hardship during the coronavirus pandemic. From April 20, the Morrison Government is allowing retrenched workers and those suffering financial hardship because of shutdowns to access