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ISA urges greater engagement with super

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More engaged members have been found to be happier with their fund’s performance.

Industry Super Australia (ISA) has urged Australians to engage with their super after finding that those who do are more likely to believe they are in an above-average performing fund.

According to a survey conducted by UMR, only 26 per cent of Australians know their exact super balance and regularly monitor its performance. However, these individuals were found to be more likely to have higher balances and say they are in the best-performing super funds.

About 54 per cent of those who claimed to know their super balance exactly indicated that their fund’s performance was at least above average, compared to 28 per cent of those who check their balance once a year and 13 per cent of those who rarely check it.

“People who check their super are generally happier with how their fund is performing; the more engaged you are, the more likely you are to make good financial decisions,” commented ISA chief executive Bernie Dean.

Overall, 37 per cent of respondents rated their super fund as above average or excellent, while only 12 per cent rated their fund’s performance as below average or very poor.

Men were more likely to say they were in a better fund, as 47 per cent indicated that their fund’s performance was at least above average compared to 29 per cent of women.

The survey identified similar levels of engagement with super across different age groups with 30 per cent of those over 55, 26 per cent of those aged 35 to 54, and 23 per cent of those aged 18 to 34 claiming to know their exact super balance.

“Spending a little more time checking your super could spare many people a lifetime of economic pain caused by being stuck with a dud fund that robs you of hundreds of thousands from your retirement,” Mr Dean suggested.

Furthermore, ISA suggested that Australians should take advantage of the quieter summer holiday period to get engaged and get to know their super fund better.

“Check you are getting what is legally owed, that you’re in a fund with a long-term history of good performance, combine multiple accounts and invest extra in super if you can — getting engaged with super now will give you the best chance at a financially secure future,” said Mr Dean.