Superannuation assets totalled $2.7 trillion at the end of the March 2020 quarter. Over the 12 months from March 2019 there was a 0.3 per cent reduction in total superannuation assets.
Total assets in MySuper products totalled $710 billion at the end of the March 2020 quarter. Over the 12 months from March 2019 there was a 0.4 per cent decrease in total assets in MySuper products.
The reduction in the value of assets during the March quarter 2020 was due to the significant downturn in local and overseas financial markets as a result of COVID-19. However, the reduction in assets over the 12 months period was modest, reflecting investment earnings earlier in the year and net inflows of contributions.
For APRA regulated funds:
There were $28.8 billion of contributions in the March 2020 quarter, up 7.5 per cent from the March 2019 quarter ($26.8 billion). Total contributions for the year ending March 2020 were $121.1 billion. Inward benefit transfers exceeded outward benefit transfers by $0.9 billion in the March 2020 quarter. Inward benefit transfers include transfers from the ATO to superannuation funds where a match had been found with unclaimed super, particularly as part of the Protecting Your Super Package (PYSP) reform.
There were $21.7 billion in total benefit payments in the March 2020 quarter, an increase of 14.8 per cent from the March 2019 quarter ($18.9 billion). Total benefit payments for the year ending March 2020 were $85.8 billion. Lump sum benefit payments ($11.4 billion) were 52.6 per cent and pension benefit payments ($10.3 billion) were 47.4 per cent of total benefit payments in the March 2020 quarter. For the year ending March 2020, lump sum benefit payments ($44.3 billion) were 51.6 per cent and pension payments ($44.3 billion) were 48.4 per cent of total benefit payments. Benefit payments include amount transferred to the ATO under PYSP as inactive low balance accounts.
Net contribution flows (contributions plus net benefit transfers less benefit payments) totalled $12 billion in the March 2020 quarter, an increase of 81.8 per cent from the March 2019 quarter ($6.6 billion). Net contribution flows for the year ending March 2020 were $45.4 billion.
The annual industry-wide rate of return (ROR) for entities with more than four members for the year ending March 2020 was -3.3 per cent and was -10.3 per cent in the March quarter 2020. The five year average annualised ROR to March 2020 was 3.7 per cent.
Over the March 2020 quarter, total assets decreased by 7.3 per cent (or $158 billion) to $2.0 trillion.
As at the end of the March 2020 quarter, 47.5 per cent of the $1.7 trillion investments were invested in equities; with 18.7 per cent in Australian listed equities, 24.1 per cent in international listed equities and 4.6 per cent in unlisted equities. Fixed income and cash investments accounted for 34.6 per cent of investments; 21.1 per cent in fixed income and 13.6 per cent in cash. The cash allocation increased from 9.5 per cent during the quarter due to a number of factors, including the equity market downturn, member switching between investment options and funds increasing liquidity ahead of the start of the Early Release scheme.
Property and infrastructure accounted for 14.3 per cent of investments and 3.5 per cent was invested in other assets, including hedge funds and commodities.