Overall super fund satisfaction among Australians fell to 66.6 per cent in February this year, according to data from Roy Morgan’s most recent Superannuation Satisfaction Report.
This was down from the record high of 72.0 per cent reached in January 2022 and was the lowest level since December 2020, when satisfaction sat at 64.8 per cent.
“The drop in customer satisfaction from a year ago has occurred as the ASX 200 experienced a period of volatility since mid-2021,” commented Roy Morgan chief executive officer Michele Levine.
“The ASX 200 reached a high of 7,628.9 on August 13, 2021, and fell by almost 1,200 points when the index closed at 6,433.4 on June 20, 2022. Since the middle of last year, the ASX 200 has significantly recovered and closed at 7,258.4 at the end of February.”
Industry fund customer satisfaction was found to have dropped by 6.3 percentage points to 67.9 per cent, while retail fund satisfaction fell by 5.6 percentage points to 61.3 per cent.
Self-managed super funds (74.7 per cent) and public sector funds (73.4 per cent) had higher levels of satisfaction, but still suffered falls of 5.3 and 5.7 percentage points, respectively.
“The industry funds with the highest customer satisfaction in February 2023 include UniSuper, HESTA AustralianSuper, and Hostplus while the most impressive retail fund is Macquarie, which increased its customer satisfaction by 3.9 per cent points despite the broader downtrends,” Ms Levine said.
Roy Morgan noted that super fund satisfaction still remains well above the long-term average of 57.9 per cent between 2007 to 2023 and higher than at any point prior to 2021.
Along with the challenges related to market volatility, the firm noted that consolidation has continued at pace in the super industry with many funds seeking to merge.
This has included UniSuper’s merger with Australian Catholic Super, HESTA’s merger with Mercy Super, and Hostplus’ merger with Statewide Super among many others.
“As the industry continues to consolidate in the years ahead, we are set to see more such mergers and acquisitions as the larger players look to increase the amount of assets they have under management in an increasingly competitive industry,” Ms Levine said.
“The premium on maintaining a high degree of customer satisfaction and providing better investment returns will only increase.”
Jon Bragg is a journalist for Momentum Media's Investor Daily, nestegg and ifa. He enjoys writing about a wide variety of financial topics and issues and exploring the many implications they have on all aspects of life.