Only half of working consumers who searched for retirement information pertinent with their financial situation were able to find it, with a new report citing a gap in superannuation funds and their communication with members.
Investment Trends has made the conclusion in its 10th annual Retirement Income Report, a study of Australians’ attitudes towards retirement and post-retirement issues.
The latest research has drawn on the responses of 5,210 adults over the age of 40.
According to the findings, few non-retirees were seen to actively seek and find retirement-related information – with only two in five looking for answers, but of those individuals, only half found what they needed.
King Loong Choi, senior analyst at Investment Trends, said currently, super is the most frequent point of contact for consumers looking for information on retirement, but funds need to improve on accessibility and relevance of content.
“It is crucial that relevant retirement information is easy to find, as those who successfully find the information they need are highly likely to take further action – almost 90 per cent of them,” Mr Choi said.
“And the actions these people take are important ones, most often preparing a will, seeking financial advice and making voluntary super contributions.
“Our research also reveals that Australians who were successful in seeking information from their super fund were more likely to engage with their fund, stay with their fund and consolidate other super monies to their fund.”
Aussies who contribute more worry less
The research indicated many consumers worry about their retirement prospects, but those who contributed 1.5 per cent more than the superannuation guarantee level had significantly greater peace of mind.
These consumers contributing 11 per cent of their annual household income instead of 9.5 per cent as mandated by the super guarantee believed they would live comfortably in retirement, in contrast to the majority of working Australians (47 per cent) who did not believe they were prepared.
Nationwide, the findings found only a quarter of non-retirees believed they were contributing enough to live comfortably.
“While many Australians worry about their retirement prospects, there is only a small difference in superannuation contribution levels between those who fear being unable to retire comfortably and those who are positive about their prospects,” Mr Choi said.
“Even among lower income households, a slight increase in super contribution levels corresponds with greater confidence in retirement outcomes.
“Super funds and retirement product manufacturers can play an important role in encouraging Australians to start thinking about their retirement from an earlier age, and show them how a small increase in their super contributions can make a significant difference.”
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
You can contact her on [email protected].
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