Members are being encouraged to have “reasonable expectations” for growth, after super funds saw strong performance in the last financial year.
Speaking at the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI) conference, Damien Graham, Aware Super chief investment officer (CIO), said they always wanted members to retain a long-term view.
“From my perspective, we’re always trying to ensure members have reasonable expectations and a long-term view of what they need from their super or their retirement savings,” Graham said.
“Twelve months ago, we were having a very different conversation with very weak returns, so we’ve seen a very strong rebound and a strong return for members in the last financial year.
“But that long-term view and making sure people are attached to what they need on a long-term basis will try to ensure they don’t have too high an expectation after a strong year – or too negative of an expectation after a weaker year – because both can be quite damaging.”
When it came to how the COVID-19 pandemic had changed the investment landscape, Graham said the biggest observation was how some sectors had pulled growth forward.
“If you look at the sectors that have done really well, there’s been some structural changes,” Graham said.
“Online retailing is an example, where there’s been a very strong pull forward of what was a long-term trend.
“Some people have suggested five years of changes happened in a quarter last year, with regards to online retailing and logistics.
“But we’re in a period of longer-term where rates are likely to stay low and that means there will be a different way of creating economic growth.
“That’s a medium-term issue, rather than just the short-term cyclical issues we’re seeing, as well as the structural issues.”