Australians want employers to better support financial wellbeing

Sunsuper has surveyed 1,000 Australian workers and found that—when it comes to ways their employer can best support their financial wellbeing—employees want additional super contributions.

The results found that lack of financial security was the biggest cause of stress for people (40 per cent) and only one third (36 per cent) of workers believed their company cares about their financial wellbeing.

When questioned about how they would most want their employer to support their financial wellbeing, 40 per cent said through additional super contributions, 31 per cent by offering financial advice and education, 21per cent said discounts on everyday items and 8 per cent through budgeting guidance.

Sunsuper’s CEO Scott Hartley said it’s clear that a significant proportion of Australian employees’ stress is caused by money worries and employers need to be doing more.

First State Super’s Victorian Land Registry Services selected for 40-year concession to operate Victorian land registry services

Premier of Victoria, the Hon. Daniel Andrews MP, has announced Victorian Land Registry Services as the successful bidder to operate parts of the Land Registry Services (LRS) business division of Land Use Victoria (LUV). The 40-year concession was announced following a competitive tender process.

Victorian Land Registry Services is 100 per cent owned by First State Super, which has a more than 50-year history of investing in and supporting Victoria through its merger with Health Super in 2011, and has more than 180,000 members in the State.

First State Super is also a significant investor in Australian Registry Investments (ARI), the operator of the land titling and registry business in New South Wales.

Make smarter financial decisions by harnessing willpower

An Australian-first training program created by researchers at Monash University could help investors train their brains against the urge to hold on to bad investments instead of cutting their losses.

The findings by Dr Kristian Rotaru from Monash Business School and his research collaborators could be the basis for new schemes that teach people how to make better financial decisions.

The researchers conducted three separate tests with 68 participants across four-week intervals at the Monash Business Behavioural Laboratory.

The first of its kind in a financial setting, these clinical tests tracked the eye movements and the skin responses of each participant to assess their emotional arousal after being exposed to a number of scenarios.

Initially, in a simulated scenario, the participants were investing their own capital. However, the investment approaches of each individual changed when they were asked to guide the financial decision-making of a colleague or client in a hypothetical business environment.

“Once you really want to help someone, you become a more ‘procedurally rational’ decision maker – with a tendency to follow a specific strategy that could be potentially explained to the client. People may not find it as easy to convince their client to hold on to a losing asset for too long in the hope of market reversal,” Dr Rotaru said.

The study is a joint collaboration between Dr Rotaru; Professor Peter Bossaerts and Dr Nitin Yadav from the University of Melbourne; and Professor Petko Kalev from La Trobe University.

UniSuper reduces admin fees for casual and young members

UniSuper has announced a significant reduction in its annual administration fee.

From 1 October, UniSuper will replace its standard annual $96 fixed administration fee on its accumulation products with an annual fee of the lesser of $96 or 2 per cent of the member’s account balance.

The change will reduce the fees for more than 100,000 members who currently have an account balance of less than $4,800. In practice, these fees will also be reduced by a 15 per cent tax rebate passed on to members.

UniSuper CEO Kevin O’Sullivan said the change would be of greatest benefit to casual, young and new members, helping them build their account balance more quickly.

The changes ensure that UniSuper’s fees satisfy, in advance, the proposed changes announced in the Federal Budget which included a cap of 3 per cent on combined administration and investment fees and costs for superannuation accounts with balances of less than $6,000.

Robeco appointed for emerging markets sustainable equities mandate

Robeco has been awarded a mandate from Australian Catholic Superannuation and Retirement Fund (ACSRF) for its Emerging Markets Sustainable Active Equities strategy.

Australian Catholic Superannuation and Retirement Fund (ACSRF) elected to invest in Robeco’s Emerging Markets Sustainable Active Equities strategy, which aims to offer a significantly better sustainability profile than the benchmark (MSCI Emerging Markets Index), while maintaining the ability to provide alpha in emerging markets.