Australian Super is an industry fund that is used by more than 2.87 million Australians, making it the country's largest superfund. Over the last 10 years, Australian Super has been a high performing super fund–giving its members an average annual return of 9.14% via its balanced investment option.
Australian Ethical Super is certified by the Responsible Investment Association Australasia. UniSuper has the lowest fees of all Balanced MySuper funds and high performance returns. AustralianSuper is the largest super fund. Its Balanced fund ranks 2nd for 10-year returns and has lower fees than many other major funds.
Positive investment option performance
The Balanced investment option, over the last 10 years to 31 March 2023, has delivered an average return of 8.71% each year for super accounts and 9.56% each year for Choice income accounts. AustralianSuper has a strong track record as a top performing super fund.
See also our super fund monthly performance reckoner. It didn't seem possible a year ago, but despite ongoing market volatility and uncertainty the median Growth fund finished the 2023 financial year up a remarkable 9.2%. That easily made up for the previous year's 3.3% loss.
According to the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia's Retirement Standard, to have a 'comfortable' retirement, single people will need $595,000 in retirement savings, and couples will need $690,000.
Assume, for example, you will need 65 per cent of your pre-retirement income, so if you earn $50,000 now, you might need $32,500 in retirement.
The ASFA Retirement Standard Explainer says a comfortable retirement lifestyle would need $640,000 in super for a couple, or $545,000 for a single person.
The balance in your superannuation account generally rises over time as you accumulate contributions from your employer. However, super fees and changing investment performance can lead to dips in your super balance.
Hostplus had the best performance with 8.9 per cent, followed by AustralianSuper (8.9 per cent), ART and UniSuper (both 8.4 per cent), and Cbus (8.3 per cent).
As a general rule, most people will need 70% of their take home pay to maintain their lifestyle in retirement. And since we're living longer, which is great, your super may need to last for 30 years or more after you retire.
Investment safeguards – super is highly protected in Australia and cannot be accessed until a condition of release is met. Professionally managed funds – Student Super members are invested in Macquarie and BlackRock funds or Westpac cash management accounts, depending on their balance.
Investing in a super fund has less risk because bankruptcy will not affect your retirement savings if they are held in a regulated super fund, and your money will be protected from creditors. In a similar vein, any money taken out of your retirement plan following bankruptcy is typically protected.
If you're young and still a while away from retirement, generally the best thing to do with your super before or during a recession is to leave it alone. If you've got your super in a balanced or growth fund (which the majority of Australians do), your super will already be diversified across a range of assets.
Does a share market fall mean that I have lost my super? If your investment mix includes shares, a fall in share markets will likely reduce the unit price of your super and hence your account value. This is not necessarily cause for panic, as your number of units will not have changed.
So looking at the table, you can see that a 60-year old male will need a lump sum of almost $500,000 to provide an annual income in retirement of $42,000 for 20 years. These calculations are based on a 20-year time frame because the approximate life expectancy for Australian males is 84 years and 88 for females.
Overall, retiring at 60 is doable with $500,000 but it may not be doable for you. It really depends on your personal living situation and what your potential expenses are going to be.
Assuming long-term market returns stay more or less the same, the Rule of 72 tells us that you should be able to double your money every 7.2 years. So, after 7.2 years have passed, you'll have $200,000; after 14.4 years, $400,000; after 21.6 years, $800,000; and after 28.8 years, $1.6 million.
ASFA estimates people who want a comfortable retirement need $690,000 for a couple, and $595,000 for a single person when they leave work, assuming they also receive a partial age pension from the federal government. For people who are happy to have a modest lifestyle, this figure is $100,000.
A helpful cost of living benchmark prepared quarterly by the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA), shows an average single person needs approximately $595,000 in superannuation before retiring, while a couple requires around $690,000.
Yes, for some people, $2 million should be more than enough to retire. For others, $2 million may not even scratch the surface. The answer depends on your personal situation and there are lot of challenges you'll face. As of 2023, it seems the number of obstacles to a successful retirement continues to grow.