Australia’s best balanced super funds had a stellar year in 2020-21, with eight of the top 10 funds returning over 20 per cent, according to new research.
The SuperRatings data revealed that the top 20 funds in the balanced category all returned over 18 per cent in the 2021 financial year, with the Qantas Super Gateway – Growth fund producing the top result of 22 per cent.
BT Panorama’s Full Menu – BT Wholesale Multi-Manager was in second place with a 21.4 per cent return, while Hostplus’ Balanced option generated 21.3 per cent.
Balanced options from CFS, MLC, Sunsuper, AustralianSuper and REI Super all returned above 20 per cent for the year.
“Overall, returns for the 12 months to June 2021 should provide everyday Australians with confidence that super funds have capitalised on the market recovery, while also performing well during the sell-off in March 2020,” SuperRatings executive director Kirby Rappell said.
“While we saw funds that had a high exposure to equity markets fall dramatically when the pandemic first hit markets in February, these were the same funds that then rebounded strongly as markets recovered.”
In terms of long-term performance, AustralianSuper and Hostplus balanced options were the top performers, returning 9.7 per cent annualised over 10 years. Cbus’ growth option and UniSuper’s balanced fund were in second place with 9.6 per cent annualised returns over 10 years.
In terms of risk-adjusted returns, QSuper was ranked the best with 8.1 per cent annualised over seven years and a risk ranking of 1, followed by BUSSQ Premium Choice balanced with 8.5 per cent and a risk ranking of 2.
For sustainable investing options, HESTA’s Sustainable Growth fund had produced the best annualised return over five years with 11.8 per cent.
Mr Rappell said ethical options were starting to be able to compete with mainstream funds as the sustainable investing sector evolved and became more sophisticated.
“A really interesting trend has been the evolution of funds’ sustainable options. In the past, the average sustainable option’s return tended to lag the standard balanced option,” he said.
“However, in more recent times, these options have performed well with the top performing options surpassing their typical balanced style counterparts in some cases.”
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