Superannuation assets in aggregate were $2,032 billion ($2.1 trillion rounded) at the end of the June 2016 quarter, slightly up from the previous quarter and now at an all time historical record level. Over the 12 months to June 2016, there was a 3.5 per cent increase in total superannuation assets.
Total assets in MySuper products were $467 billion at the end of the June 2016 quarter, up by 10.7 per cent from a year earlier.
Detailed MySuper statistics, including asset allocation benchmarks and information on product fees by specific MySuper offering, are available from APRA
Accrued default amounts continue to fall and were $41.3 billion, down from $59.2 billion a year earlier. Retail funds are responsible for the bulk of the remaining accrued default amounts. In September 2015 there were 2.5 million member accounts in total that included an accrued default amount.
Contributions to funds with more than four members over the June 2016 quarter were $30.1 billion, down 0.8 per cent from the June 2015 quarter. Total contributions for the year ending June 2016 were $104 billion, largely unchanged from the previous year.
Most employer contributions are now superannuation guarantee (SG) or for defined benefit with salary sacrifice only a small proportion of total employer contributions (less than 10 per cent). A reduction in concessional contribution caps as proposed in the May 2016 Budge would be likely to reduce this proportion further.
Personal contributions in the June quarter 2016 were down around 10 per cent compared to the same quarter a year earlier. The Budget proposal to impose a lifetime non-concessional contribution cap effective from 3 May 2016 is likely to have had both a direct impact on personal (non-concessional) contributions as well as impacting on confidence about contributing to superannuation.
The APRA-regulated sector average for investment returns was 2.8 per cent over the year to the quarter. This was across all investment options. The five year average annualised ROR to June 2016 was 7.4 per cent.
The main valuation effects that occurred during the June quarter 2016 were as follows: the S&P/ASX 200 increased 3.0 per cent; the price of foreign shares, as represented by the MSCI World Index excluding Australia, increased 0.3 per cent; and the A$ depreciated 3.0 per cent against the US$.
Outward benefit transfers exceeded inward benefit transfers by $1.2 billion in the June 2016 quarter. The outflow to self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs) was $1,775 million in the quarter, up slightly from $1,683 million in the previous quarter. However, this is not large compared to the size of the SMSF sector and is not really driving growth of that sector.
There were $18.3 billion in total benefit payments in the June 2016 quarter. Total benefit payments for the year ending June 2016 were $64.8 billion.
The number of APRA funds increased by one in the June quarter. Fund merger activity amongst major funds has stalled for the time being in terms of completed mergers amongst larger funds. However, the number of corporate funds fell from 35 to 32 over the year.
APRA also published a special supplement setting out details of the number of the various types of accounts associated with payments of pensions, the assets associated with such accounts and the pension benefits paid.