Super funds are estimated to have delivered an annual return of 10.5 per cent for 2017, pushed up by a projected growth of 0.6 per cent in December, says SuperRatings.
This growth was driven predominantly by a late rally in Australian shares but countered by the poor performance of global shares, which constituted the bulk of most portfolios, the statement said.
Commenting on the results, SuperRatings chief executive Kirby Rappell said, “Investors will certainly be starting out 2018 on the front foot, despite some of the challenges we have seen throughout the past 12 months.”
It had been a “frustrating” year for Australian investors with the share market having experienced “fits and starts”, Mr Rappell added.
“However, a falling Australian dollar in the latter part of the year did help boost returns for funds’ international share exposures,” he said.
“Of course, the US market has provided some crucial support, with the new US tax package providing some momentum in the market; however, we will have to wait and see exactly how that will ﬂow through to returns in 2018.”
If Australian super funds did indeed deliver returns of 10.5 per cent for 2017, this would mark the sixth consecutive year to have done so since 2011, the statement said.
The 10.5 per cent figure also represents nearly double the 10-year average of 5.6 per cent, which was pulled down by the 19.7 per cent negative return attributed to the global financial crisis.
“Over longer periods, superannuation funds have generally delivered solid performance,” Mr Rappell said.
“The 10-year figure may appear relatively weak and below the common CPI plus 3.5 per cent target, but when we look back to 1992 we see that returns sit above this benchmark.”
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