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ASFA in Focus April 2021

Policy update | Government and regulator interaction | Research and submissions | Media | Events and Learning

Policy update

ASFA Policy provides a policy update:

Government and regulator interaction

We’ve continued our discussions from March into April with members of Parliament about, in particular, the Your Future, Your Super Bill. We’ve shared our concerns, which are also outlined in our submission to the Senate Economics Committee.

We also continue to regularly discuss with the regulators upcoming regulatory changes (such as Design and Distribution Obligations and Internal Dispute Resolution), communicating our members’ concerns or questions around operational impacts.  

Research and submissions

Our newest research paper analyses the superannuation balances of older Australians, particularly prior to death. Using ATO, APRA and HILDA data our research found that the great bulk of Australians exhaust their superannuation in retirement and leave no superannuation when they pass away. The data indicated, for example, that 90 per cent of Australian retirees aged over 80 had no superannuation in their final years.

We’ve also provided a submission to the Senate Economics Committee as part of their inquiry into the Your Future, Your Super Bill. Our submission makes 15 recommendations, including that the performance benchmark test is run on a ‘trial’ basis for two years and that APRA’s determination of the results of the annual performance test be a ‘reviewable decision’.

We have released a research paper explores the topical issue of housing affordability and superannuation. The paper concludes that using super for housing would put significant upward pressure on house prices and exacerbate housing affordability concerns for low-income earners. It also recommends that the Federal Government commission a comprehensive and independent review of housing affordability.

Our submission to Treasury in response to their review of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) made recommendations around the following five key themes:

  1. Embed superannuation knowledge and experience for front-line AFCA staff
  2. Streamline AFCA rules and processes to improve efficiency and stakeholder experience
  3. Promote procedural fairness and clarify AFCA’s ‘fairness jurisdiction’
  4. Increase transparency to enhance stakeholder confidence
  5. Clarify AFCA’s ongoing funding model for superannuation


Our superannuation balances prior to death research paper was featured in articles in The Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun.

ASFA’s housing affordability and super research paper was mentioned in the media including the Australian, SMH and Canberra Times.

The ASFA Retirement Standard, updated for the December quarter, was featured in the SMH, Kalgoorlie Miner, Daily Mail, Canstar and Super Review.

Our media release welcoming the passage of the Reuniting More Superannuation Bill and the Royal Commission Response No. 2 Bill was featured in a Super Review article.

Events and Learning

Look out for our upcoming Budget Briefings events between 12-14 May in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Industry experts will be unpacking the Federal Budget by discussing the issues and decisions impacting our industry.

Our ASFA Policy Roadshow held in March was hugely popular this year. APRA, ASIC, ATO and AFCA representatives all shared their insights into issues shaping the superannuation landscape. If you’re interested in catching up on this event, the recording is now available on demand at a reduced rate. Get in touch with our events team for more details.

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