Today we have heard much about the problems people face in retirement. And we have heard deep insights from industry leaders about the challenges they face in helping retirees manage their financial risks. As a non profit, non partisan, independent… Read More
With the 2018-19 Federal Budget announcement of an expansion of the little-known Pension Loans Scheme, it is timely to revisit the hurdles to be overcome before housing can play a meaningful role in meeting Australia’s future retirement income challenge.
Changes announced in the federal budget take us a step forward in ensuring the superannuation system achieves what it was set up to do – provide greater security of income for people in retirement while reducing the burden on taxpayers of supporting retirees. The budget this week promised a new retirement income… Read More
The crisis of public confidence in the financial planning industry, intensified by the revelations at the Haynes Royal Commission, provides the starkest case yet for a consumer-centric approach to meeting Australia’s retirement income challenge. Australia’s defined contribution superannuation system asks individuals to manage financial risks beyond their capability. You might think that the… Read More
Habitual policy tinkering, in place of systematic and holistic policy formation, is exacerbating the difficulties Australians face in planning for their retirement and is undermining public confidence in the system.
If Australians are not to live unnecessarily frugally in retirement and the government is to reduce dependence of retirees on the public purse, upcoming decisions on the means testing of longevity products will be critical.
The battle over the future of Australia’s superannuation system is being fought on the same old ground of accumulation, leaving the real issue unattended – the welfare of millions of people entering retirement.
The government’s proposed My Super “outcomes test” for superannuation trustees running default accumulation funds is significant. It could finally provide the means to nudge trustees toward developing effective comprehensive income products for retirees (CIPRs). Until now, criticism of Treasury’s proposals for CIPRs has risked overshadowing the ends of long-term policy reform with argument over means. But the move to improve superannuation governance to… Read More
The recent proposal and ensuing debate about allowing young people to access their superannuation to buy their first homes has again highlighted many of the shortcomings about policy discussions in Australia today. Once again, the various parties took up their positions for and against the proposal. While debate is undoubtedly welcome, sometimes… Read More
Just before Christmas, a Treasury discussion paper suggested an approach on the regulation of superannuation retirement benefits – so called Comprehensive Income Products in Retirement (CIPRs) or ‘MyRetirement’ as Treasury preferred. You might well ask why – after 25 years of compulsory super and thousands of pages of legislation, regulation… Read More
Industry insistence on the inclusion in proposed legislation of a “comfortable” income target for superannuation is putting at risk the need to establish clarity about the goal for super and could lower the living standards of working families. Acting on the recommendations of the Murray inquiry into the financial system, the federal… Read More
The federal government’s recent deal on reforming superannuation tax concessions may have taken some political heat out of the issue, but the challenge of building a more sustainable retirement income system looms larger than ever.
With research showing most people won’t have enough superannuation to enjoy a comfortable retirement and meet aged care costs, is it time we made the family home the fourth pillar of the retirement income system?
The biggest changes in superannuation in a decade will help address issues of equity and sustainability, but the need for a holistic and flexible system that delivers adequate incomes for all Australians through retirement remains on the table.
Originally published in the Australian Financial Review on 28 April 2015. It was a quarter of a century ago that Australia led the world in setting up compulsory superannuation. Now, with population ageing, lifespans increasing, public finances stretched and the risk of people outliving their savings growing, the system needs to evolve in response to changing circumstances, writes CSRI… Read More
Originally published in the Australian Financial Review on 3 May 2015. “Australia’s visionary retirement system needs an overhaul that will return it to the spirit of its original purpose – a decent retirement for everyone”. The decision by the Hawke-Keating government to introduce the superannuation system, allowing the majority of workers… Read More
Originally published in the Australian Financial Review on 26 May, 2015. “Two decades of tweaking have created a complex retirement savings system that has strayed far from its originally designed purpose of providing incomes in retirement” changes announced in the 2015/16 federal budget demonstrate the limitations of… Read More
Australia’s retirement savings system has become a political football. But the leadership change in Canberra gives hope for a more bipartisan approach to reform. Our retirement savings system has many strengths but it is far from perfect. Key issues include a gender imbalance, tax concessions that favour those who least need them… Read More
While the National Reform Summit, held in Sydney on 26 August, has set up a practical action plan for a sustainable retirement income system, the real work is yet to begin, Superannuation may be forever a political battleground, but the truth is that away from the party… Read More