More members get more super due to $450 monthly income change

As a result of the removal of the $450 monthly income threshold for Superannuation Guarantee contributions (which came into effect on 1 July 2022) Rest estimates around 260,000 of its members are now receiving their full super entitlements. And around 64% of these are women.

Previously, employers were not required to pay Superannuation Guarantee contributions to workers who earnt less than $450 per month.

“The removal of the $450 income threshold has offered more than a quarter of a million examples of the power and value of reform efforts to build a fairer and more equitable super system,” said Rest CEO Vicki Doyle.

“We need to build on this momentum and implement further reforms, such as superannuation contributions on paid parental leave.”

Online searches for superannuation double in four years

Data analysed by Australian Retirement Trust (ART) shows there’s been nearly twice as many Google searches for ‘superannuation Australia’ this year compared to the same length of time in 2019.

ART’s Acting Chief of Retirement, Anne Fuchs, said it’s a clear sign Australians want to know more about super.

“The most common search is ‘super Australia’, which was searched on average just over 234,000 times per month in the last half of 2019, compared to more than 334,000 times per month in the first half of this year.

“We’ve also seen the search for ‘superannuation’ go from just over 42,000 per month to almost 60,000 per month, and ‘superannuation Australia’ more than double from about 23,000 per month to 48,000 per month.

“The other one that really stands out is searches for ‘what is superannuation’, which have jumped from 2,966 searches per month to 4,466 per month over that same time period.”

Fuchs said that while it is encouraging to see more Australians engaging with their super, it’s important Australians are getting the right advice before making any decisions that could impact their retirement savings.

Prime Super adds two more wind farms to its renewable energy platform

Prime Super has announced the acquisition of two additional wind farms, both located in Victoria. The acquisition of Chepstowe and Maroona wind farms brings the fund’s wind-energy portfolio to a total of five wind farms.

Chepstowe and Maroona wind farms complement Prime Super’s ownership of the Mortons Lane wind farm, acquired by the fund in 2021, and Ferguson and Diapur wind farms, acquired in 2022. All five are located in Victoria.

The addition of the two wind farms increases the combined generation-capacity across Prime Super’s wind energy portfolio to 52MW, which according to PATRIZIA Infrastructure (Prime Super’s investment manager), is enough to power approximately 40,300 homes.

The five wind farms are one hundred per cent owned by Prime Super.

Lachlan Baird, Chief Executive Officer of Prime Super said: “We look forward to continuing to expand our portfolio of climate-positive assets, and in doing so build on our history of delivering strong, long-term financial returns for our members. Prime Super has an extensive portfolio of direct investments that have a track record of excellent long-term investment performance for the members of the Fund, and we believe these new wind-energy acquisitions will help us continue to deliver strong performance for our members.”

Addressing Australians’ financial literacy and the gender literacy gap

A new Econosights report from AMP’s Deputy Chief Economist, Diana Mousina highlights the need to improve financial literacy standards. The report also highlights the significant gap in financial literacy levels between men and women, with women facing lower levels of income and smaller superannuation balances.The Econosights report examines the relationship between financial literacy and retirement savings finding that over one third (36%) of adults in Australia are financially illiterate, more than Germany (34%), the UK (33%) and Norway (29%) and shows the implications of the financial literacy gender gap on the retirement savings of Australian men and women. Other key points include:

  • Lower financial literacy results in worse financial outcomes including slower wealth accumulation, poorer investment decisions and lower superannuation savings. There are also social impacts including reduced confidence and less financial freedom.
  • Women tend to earn less than men in Australia (due to a variety of reasons) which impact superannuation balances (with male superannuation balances exceeding female superannuation balances at every age bracket).

Further information about the report can be found here.