Retail super funds in decline

The relative decline of retail superannuation funds over the past decade has been laid bare by the latest Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) annual superannuation bulletin which confirms them as holding the smallest percentage of assets of any category.

The data reveals that retail funds hold just 21.7% of assets, placing them behind industry funds with 25%, self-managed super funds (SMSFs) and small APRA funds with 26%, public sector funds with 23.2%.

Corporate funds continued their decline to hold just 2% of assets.

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The APRA data reported total superannuation industry assets as being $2.9 trillion as at 30 June, 2019, last year.

The commentary attaching to the data said that over the 10 years from June 2009 to June 2019, the number of SMSFs grew by 50.2% from 399,281 to 599,678, and the number of APRA-regulated funds decreased by 56.1% from 4,486 to 1,967.

It said the decrease in the number of APRA-regulated funds consisted of 228 APRA-regulated funds with more than four members and 2,238 small APRA funds.

Source: APRA

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One key reason the retail super funds are in decline is their lack of intra-fund servicing agreements. Like LIF commission cuts, the retail funds fail to understand why their representatives stubbornly refuse to work for free. This is why there are now 970 new advisers at Union Super fund central, and 4000 less advisers with the retail funds. It's basic paycheck stuff. If the adviser cannot cover his overheads, he will rearrange his affairs where he can.

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