ING Direct Super to 'shake up' SMSFs

The launch of ING Direct's superannuation product yesterday has the potential to disrupt the self-managed super fund (SMSF) market, according to Financial Synergy's Stephen Mackley.

The technology company helped launch ING's new super offer - Living Super - via Acurity Online, which has given members online access to their superannuation balance alongside banking accounts, as well as direct investment options and the ability to purchase insurance.

Mackley said most members who wanted to start self-managed super funds were looking to invest in shares, term deposits and exchange-traded funds.

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"ING Direct Living Super will allow them to invest in all of these cost-effectively, without the administrative burden and high costs of an SMSF. It will be a very attractive product for many customers," he said. 

ING Direct chief executive Vaughn Richtor said the new superannuation product was the first balanced option to do away with administration and management fees.

He said the "customer-focused" product speaks to research that found satisfaction and engagement of members with their retirement savings was low.

Members wanted access to products that were transparent and gave them control over their investments, according to Richtor. 

Mackley agreed and said, "the control and flexibility offered for extremely competitive fees has the potential to shake up the market, particularly in the self-managed sector".

The Trust Company helped register the product with the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority and will continue on as trustee of the fund. 

The Trust Company chief executive John Atkin said refining the trustee's superannuation offer in light of its expanded superannuation operations was a current focus for the business.

MetLife will provide insurance for members, while State Street Global Investors has taken on the role of custodian. Financial Synergy will continue to provide administration services.

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