Administration and Technology

Administration and Technology

AIST’s Administration and Technology Policy Position

Technology and best practice are constantly changing.  AIST strives to ensure that our members provide a service that is valuable and up to date. We will continue to push for greater personal improvement, and we see continuing professional education as key.

AIST supports innovation and is a key force behind technological change such as SuperStream and the challenges of big data. We understand that our funds owe our members the best service that they can deliver in the interests of their members.

Select from our range of publications on this topic below: 


3 Jun 2019 - Superannuation policy challenges for refreshed shadow ministry

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) welcomes the announcement of the Federal Opposition’s shadow cabinet ministry, amid a busy time for superannuation policy implementation. AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck said AIST and its member funds were committed to working productively with both sides of government on policies that will improve the retirement outcomes of all Australians.

26 May 2019 - New Coalition government encouraged to commit to 12% super

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) congratulates Jane Hume on her appointment as Assistant Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and Financial Technology under the Morrison Government.

21 May 2019 - New research highlights need for Govt agency to develop an online tool to compare super funds

A high level of confusion among members of poorly performing super funds points to the urgent need for a Government-sanctioned online tool to help Australians make more informed choices about their super savings, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees said today.

15 May 2019 - How the two major parties stack up on super and retirement: pre-election score card

The score card highlights that Labor’s policies will have more positive impact on superannuation and the retirement outcomes for most working Australians.

3 May 2019 - Super savings gap ranges from 16% and 39% depending on where you live

New research has identified Western Australia and Queensland as being the states where the superannuation savings gender gap is at its worst.

1 May 2019 - Backdown on banning conflicted financial advice will leave consumers exposed

Thousands of consumers of financial products, including superannuation, will remain exposed to conflicted financial advice if proposed regulations on grandfathered conflicted remuneration get the green light, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees has warned.

14 Apr 2019 - AIST research shows just how poor banking-owned super products are

The Fee and Performance Analysis 2019 by leading superannuation research house SuperRatings, commissioned by AIST, drills down into the differences between fees and returns across the many super products on offer and finds significant disparities between the fees charged by for-profit retail funds and profit-to-member funds.

10 Apr 2019 - Delay on consumer disclosure in super will hurt member retirement outcomes

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today warned that delays to consumer disclosure requirements will negatively impact on the retirement outcomes of millions of unsuspecting Australians. The warning follows this week’s announcement that the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is deferring key consumer disclosure requirements for non-default (Choice) super products for up to four years.

2 Apr 2019 - Modest changes to superannuation won’t help most Australians build their nest eggs

The changes to the rules for voluntary super contributions in the 2019 Federal Budget are good news for older members who can afford to make additional contributions to their superannuation savings, however they will have minimal impact on the retirement outcomes of most Australians, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said tonight.

2 Apr 2019 - Time for a re-think on financial advice - AIST IFS Financial Advice In Super Symposium

Profit-to-member superannuation funds are well-placed to expand their role in providing quality, cost-effective financial advice, delegates attending a Financial Advice in Superannuation Symposium heard today. Speaking at the joint Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) and Industry Fund Services (IFS) symposium in Melbourne, IFS CEO Cath Bowtell noted it was a tumultuous time for financial advisers post-Royal Commission and that many retail advice providers were having to re-evaluate why they provided advice.

18 Mar 2019 - David Noonan named AIST’s Trustee of the Year

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has announced Cbus director David Noonan as the recipient of the AIST Trustee of the Year Award at the Conference of Major Superannuation Funds (CMSF) held on the Gold Coast.

18 Mar 2019 - AIST welcomes new Board directors

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has welcomed a new director to its Board following an election at its 2019 AGM held at AIST conference CMSF. Ros McLennan from Sunsuper was elected as a Trustee elected director and is the only new director to join the board, with David Smith, Naomi Edwards, Louise Du Pre-Alba and Suzette Thurman all received re-election.

14 Mar 2019 - AIST acknowledges Women in Super’s advocacy role on its 25th anniversary

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today congratulated Women in Super (WIS) on reaching its 25th anniversary. The women’s networking and advocacy organisation – of which AIST is a founding member - began as a breakfast event at AIST’s Conference of Major Superannuation Funds (CMSF) in 1994 to provide networking opportunities for women working in Australia’s $2.7 trillion super sector.

13 Mar 2019 - AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck opening address at CMSF19

What we do as superannuation professionals, how we fulfil our fiduciary duties, service members, and protect and grow members’ retirement savings as stewards of their hard-earned capital has been in the spotlight this past year. In just the last two months, we’ve had to digest both the Hayne royal commission and the Productivity Commission final reports. Both reports carry recommendations that could have significant implications for our sector.

15 Feb 2019 - Amended legislation will keep more people in super system - AIST

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST), has today welcomed the passage of the Protecting Your Super package, noting that important amendments would protect members from unintended consequences of the new legislation.

4 Feb 2019 - Regulators must act on Royal Commission recommendations to protect members in for-profit super funds

Today’s release of the final report of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Banking Financial Services is an historic opportunity to restore the community’s trust in financial services and prioritise consumer best interests ahead of banking profits and executive bonuses, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees said.

21 Jan 2019 - Profit-to-member funds embrace Insurance in Super Code

Over 96% of the members of profit-to-member super funds are now covered by the Insurance in Super Code of Practice, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said today.

10 Jan 2019 - Productivity Commission gets it right on profit-to-member outperformance but misses mark on dealing with underperforming funds

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today welcomed the Productivity Commission finding hard evidence - for the third time in a year - that the best performing super funds are in the profit-to-member sector. Today’s report from the Productivity Commission, which includes an additional year of data, found that on average, for the 11 years to 2018, profit to member funds outperformed retail funds by around 2 per cent per year.

11 Dec 2018 - New law to improve compliance with superannuation obligations among small businessAIST welcomes longer transition period for fee and cost disclosure requirements

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has welcomed today’s announcement from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) that the transition periods for key fee and cost disclosure requirements have been extended.

6 Dec 2018 - New law to improve compliance with superannuation obligations among small business

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today welcomed the passage of legislation to help ensure small businesses comply with their legal obligation to pay superannuation for their workers.

5 Dec 2018 - AIST Awards celebrate achievements of $1.3 trillion profit-to-member super sector

A focus on targeted, personalised communication about superannuation was a key theme among winning campaigns at last night’s Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) Awards for Excellence.

20 Nov 2018 - Domestic violence measures welcome but Government’s economic package falls short on improving retirement outcomes for women

The Government’s newly announced Women’s Economic Security Statement was a missed opportunity to improve retirement outcomes for women, said the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) today.

14 Nov 2018 - Welcome move to ensure super funds members who need insurance don’t lose it

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has welcomed today’s announcement from the Opposition that it will move to amend key measures in the insurance in superannuation package now before Parliament.

7 Nov 2018 - 12% super needed to deliver a dignified retirement for all working Australians

Moving to 12% superannuation is vital to ensure that all working Australians achieve a dignified standard of living in retirement, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said today.

31 Oct 2018 - AIST member funds are AFCA-ready

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today welcomed the launch of the new financial complaints body, the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA). Designed to be a one-stop shop for financial complaint resolution, AFCA represents the amalgamation of the Super Complaints Tribunal (SCT), the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) and Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO).

25 Oct 2018 - AIST welcomes end to decades of unfairness for WA de facto couples on super splitting

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has welcomed an announcement by the Federal Attorney-General today that separated de facto couples in Western Australia will soon be able to achieve a fair split of their superannuation assets in property settlements.

19 Sep 2018 - Labor’s super proposals an important step to improving retirement outcomes

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) welcomes Labor’s pre-election commitment that it will pay superannuation on government paid parental leave and scrap the minimum $450 monthly pay threshold for super payments.

17 Sep 2018 - Super’s next decade – where would you rather be?

Australian workers who invest their super in funds outside the high performing MySuper sector could be as much as $52.5 billion worse off in a decade’s time, according to new research from Rice Warner.

6 Sep 2018 - Scrapping pension age increase a win for older workers: AIST

The Australian institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has welcomed today’s announcement by Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, that the Government will not proceed with its policy to raise the access age for the Age Pension to 70 years.

5 Sep 2018 - AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck opening address at ASI 2018

Profit-to-member super has been in a defensive position for longer than we all care to remember. We have had to defend against attacks on the compulsory nature of superannuation by those who would rather see full wages freedom as opposed to a compulsory retirement savings system. We have had to defend our sector’s governance structure and the role of employer and employee representation on equal representation boards.

29 Aug 2018 - AFR opinion piece (Aug 2018): Retail trustees, with their independent directors, were unable to protect members from fee gouging and other misconduct. They should be barred from MySuper

The Government’s fixation with industry super funds and its desire to break up the role of union and employer groups on industry fund boards looks like it has been finally laid to rest. In pursing industry funds relentlessly, the Government took its eye off the banks and the inherent conflicts of interest at the heart of their operations.

20 Aug 2018 - Government’s rejection of key Senate recommendations a setback for the retirement outcomes of Australian working women

The Turnbull Government’s disregard for key Senate recommendations on reforming super was disappointing and a setback for the retirement outcomes of Australian women, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees said today.

6 Aug 2018 - AIST Statement on the Royal Commission

The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry begins its Round Five hearings today in Melbourne. The focus of Round Five is superannuation, with the hearings scheduled to run for two weeks. Some AIST member funds have been given notice to give evidence and answer questions in these hearings.

25 Jul 2018 - Industry funding for new dispute body must avoid cross subsidisation

Funding for the newly-established Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) must avoid cross subsidisation by stakeholders, including super funds, The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has warned. In its submission to AFCA on the authority’s proposed funding models, AIST says it is essential that AFCA is appropriately funded to ensure it can provide an effective and efficient dispute resolution service to consumers and scheme members.

24 Jul 2018 - AIST welcomes report on fee and cost disclosure in superannuation

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today welcomed the release of a comprehensive report into the fee and cost disclosure regime for superannuation funds. AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck said the report – prepared by independent expert, Darren McShane at the request of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) – vindicated many of AIST’s concerns with the existing fee and cost disclosure regime for superannuation funds.

14 Mar 2018 - Opening address - AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck at the 2018 Conference of Major Super Funds, Brisbane

"We are set for another big year in our industry this year. Assets under management continue to grow, markets are volatile and unpredictable, and there is a spotlight on our industry’s conduct and expenditure, through the lens of a Royal Commission ..."

8 Dec 2017 - 10th annual AIST Awards for Excellence highlight power of data in tailoring member communications

AIST has announced the winners of the 10th annual Awards for Excellence at a ceremony held in Melbourne last night.

1 Sep 2017 - ISWG fifth discussion paper

The Insurance in Superannuation Working Group today released the fifth in a series of discussion papers as a further step towards developing an Insurance Code of Practice for superannuation trustees.

28 Jul 2017 - ISWG fourth discussion paper

The Insurance in Superannuation Working Group today released the fourth in a series of discussion papers as a further step towards developing an Insurance Code of Practice for superannuation trustees.

28 Jun 2017 - Default fund must be named on new superannuation Choice online form

AIST has welcomed the digitization of superannuation choice forms but expressed concerns that important consumer protections could be overlooked as part of the process.

16 Mar 2016 - Consumer protection for late super payments retained in full

AIST has welcomed the retention of the full Superannuation Guarantee Charge – an important consumer protection measure for superannuation payments to employees – following debate in Parliament earlier today.

13 Nov 2015 - AIST Awards recognise essential role of digital in superannuation

Clever use of data segmentation and social media campaigns to improve female engagement with super for women were recognised at AIST’s 2015 Awards for Excellence last night.

13 Mar 2015 - What will the superannuation industry be like in 2025?

A survey of the superannuation industry by AIST and BNP Paribas Securities Services has shown the world we are planning for today will be very different in 10 years' time.

26 Aug 2014 - Renovate the house don’t pull it down – AIST responds to the Financial System Inquiry

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said today Australia’s $1.85 trillion superannuation system is on track to deliver further cost savings and value to members with the recently launched MySuper having already led to significant fee reductions*.

16 Jul 2014 - AIST to provide comprehensive response to the Financial Systems Inquiry interim report

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said today it would begin preparing a comprehensive response on key superannuation issues raised in the Financial System Inquiry’s interim report. AIST CEO Tom Garcia said AIST welcomed the Inquiry’s support of a robust regulatory framework for superannuation, its recognition of superannuation’s important role in the economy, and the need to develop clearer objectives for the superannuation system.

29 May 2019 - APRA member outcomes consultation

AIST submits that APRA’s proposed changes to Prudential Standard SPS 515 do not properly align it with the recent member outcomes assessment legislation. The promotion of the financial interests of members required by law must be reflected in the prudential standards, especially by giving primary consideration to the long-term net returns that deliver optimal retirement incomes to members. AIST proposes amendments and calls for the development industry benchmarks to support the assessment process.

24 May 2019 - Kinship structures and superannuation death benefits

AIST is supportive of broadening the definition of dependency to recognise cultural adoption and reflect First Australian kinship structures. We urge Treasury to consult directly with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community to understand the issues they face in relation to superannuation and the best steps to address them.

12 Apr 2019 - Enforceability of financial services industry codes

AIST has responded to a Treasury paper on the Financial Services Royal Commission recommendation about the enforceability of financial services industry codes. We supported industry codes as a means of lifting standards or for assessing if community expectations and members best interests are being met. Codes may contain both enforceable and aspirational provisions and there should be a clear and uniform approach to the identification and treatment of each type of provision. Code enforcement should generally be the responsibility of an independent body(such as a regulator) rather than a code owner.

10 Apr 2019 - APRA Capability Review

Following extensive consultation with profit-to-member funds, AIST has made a submission to the APRA Capability Review chaired by Graeme Samuel AC. AIST recommends a new superannuation mandate to better reflect APRA’s role; an integrated governmental superannuation data framework to support improved data collection, reporting and analysis; and makes numerous recommendations to improve supervisory arrangements.

10 Apr 2019 - Consultation Paper 308: Review of RG 97 Disclosing fees and costs in PDSs and periodic statements

This submission raises concerns that the latest fee and cost disclosure proposals from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) will deny consumers who invest their super through platforms and managed investment schemes (MIS) important consumer protection measures. As part of its response to the Darren McShane review of the RG 97 fee and cost disclosure requirements, ASIC proposes to defer its decision on platform disclosure and the alignment of managed investment scheme disclosure with that of superannuation. AIST’s submission warns that ASIC’s proposals will create an uneven playing field on disclosure across the super system. We also raise concerns about confusions which will occur with technical issues if the proposals are implemented as currently framed

22 Mar 2019 - Ending grandfathered conflicted remuneration for advisers

AIST supports this exposure draft legislation which will see the end of grandfathered conflicted remuneration on financial products. We believe that the 2021 implementation date is too late, and this measure must be implemented as soon as possible. In the meantime, details of commissions must immediately be added to fee disclosure statements, and in the absence of compelling reasons for their continued exemption, risk insurance products must be included in this measure.

7 Mar 2019 - AIST response to the Protecting Your Superannuation Package Regulations 2019

AIST has raised concerns with Treasury about the challenges involved in smoothly implementing some of the key measures. The regulations contain detail about the communications to be sent to inactive members with insurance, calculation of the fee cap, and arrangements for the transfer of accounts to and from the ATO. The speed with which it proceeded through Parliament has meant there are areas where greater clarity and consistency are desirable.

9 Jan 2019 - FSC Consultation Draft – Life Insurance Code of Practice

AIST is pleased to provide feedback on the Financial Services Council’s review of the Life Insurance Code of Practice Consultation Draft. AIST provided comments on the original iteration of the life code and supports efforts for its continual improvement.

26 Sep 2018 - APRA post implementation review of prudential standards

There are several reviews either in progress or recently completed that may affect the ability of APRA to provide a full review of the framework at this point in time. AIST recommends that there be a further post implementation review to consider the final report of the Royal Commission into Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services, as well as Productivity Commission reports, other recent APRA reviews, and initial industry feedback.

8 Jun 2018 - Draft CPS 234 – Information Security

AIST supports CPS 234 as a useful mechanism to promote increased focus on information security and to promote continuous improvement. AIST believes that the requirement to notify incidents to APRA within 24 hours should be clarified with respect to levels of seriousness, with less material breaches set to 5 working days. Clarification of notification of control weaknesses should also be clarified.

29 May 2018 - Protecting Your Super Package

AIST generally supports the package, but changes are needed to better meet members’ best interests. The fee cap calculation needs review and sell spreads need to be included in the calculation of exit fees in order to prevent gaming. The Insurance in Superannuation Voluntary Code of Practice should be the focus for improving member outcomes rather than the proposed legislation. Inactive accounts should be directly transferred to active accounts. A greater lead time is needed, given both process change and ATO processes already in train. AIST would appreciate further consultations to help better meet the proposals’ objectives.

20 Apr 2018 - APRA New Data Collection Consultation

AIST submits that implementation should be integrated with a review of existing documentation and forms. It should also form part of a whole of government approach to financial services reporting; this approach should be articulated by government as a priority. We emphasise the importance of appropriate communication during transition and implementation.

16 Feb 2018 - Draft legislation - SG integrity measures

AIST supports the measures contained in this exposure draft. However, we recommend further measures to effectively address the systemic problem of unpaid superannuation. This submission includes recommendations on enabling members to identify unpaid superannuation, requiring funds to have effective arrears processes in place, adequately resourcing the ATO to recover unpaid super and addressing unpaid superannuation issues affecting contractors.

25 Aug 2017 - ATO online super account name display

AIST supports the display of product names in ATO Online, but recommends changing the current listings of product names in the Fund Validation Service to improve fund name recognition by members. However, resolution of this issue does not address AIST’s wider concerns about the proposed online choice of fund form.

28 Jul 2017 - ISWG fourth discussion paper - Data management

This paper from the Insurance in Superannuation Working Group outlines proposals that seek to enhance member insurance outcomes by improving access to timely and relevant information.

3 May 2017 - Response to Productivity Commission Draft Report: Superannuation: Alternate Default Models

AIST identifies key elements for a robust default fund selection process in its response to the Productivity Commission Draft Report: Superannuation: Alternative Default Models.

16 Nov 2016 - Senate Economics: Super reform package of bills

This package of bills contain tax measures proposed in the 2016 Federal Budget. AIST generally supports these measures, noting some practical difficulties to implementation. In this submission, AIST encourages prompt passing of the bills to ensure that sufficient time is given to enable implementation by 1 July 2017.

21 Oct 2016 - Tranche 3 of superannuation reform draft bill

The third tranche of superannuation reform will implement a lower annual non-concessional contributions cap, an account balance cap on non-concessional contributions and streamlines release authorities for Division 293 taxation. AIST notes the dependence of these measures on timely and accurate data being held by the ATO, but supports these measures and their early consideration by Parliament.

20 Oct 2016 - Response to Statement of Issues: Link’s possible acquisition of Pillar

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) has issued a Statement of Issues (SOI) regarding the possible acquisition of Pillar by Link Administration Holdings Ltd. AIST made a submission during the targeted consultation stage which contained our thoughts in regards to the proposed acquisition. We have considered the SOI and in this submission, we restate the comments that we made previously. Our previous submission is available here.

7 Oct 2016 - External Dispute Resolution Framework

The Government’s review of the financial system’s external dispute resolution framework must carefully consider the needs of consumers. Due to the growth of the superannuation sector the dispute resolution framework must continue to be well equipped to deal with consumer demands and AIST believes that there is scope for improvement. AIST is not opposed to the establishment of a triage service, or a single disputes handling body.

2 Sep 2016 - Response to request for submissions: Link’s possible acquisition of Pillar

While taking a neutral position on commercial matters, AIST notes that superannuation funds have increasingly limited alternatives for the provision of superannuation administration, with there being constraints to insourcing. There is already a high level of market concentration from any perspective, and any increase could also increase systemic risks. New market entrants are possible, but not known. The charts forming part of this submission are also available as a separate paper.

29 Jul 2016 - Data Availability and Use - AIST response to Productivity Commission Issues Paper

Effective use and access to superannuation data is integral to the efficient functioning and integrity of the superannuation system. Superannuation data issues have been raised in previous inquiries and steps have been taken to address especially by the ATO, but significant recurring problems – including all of those identified in the Productivity Commission issues paper – remain and require a higher priority and integrated whole-of-government focus.

17 Jun 2016 - Technology neutrality – meeting notices and materials proposals paper

This submission is AIST's response to the Government's plans to modernise financial regulation rules around the distribution of materials taking into account recent tech developments.

20 May 2016 - CP 254: Digital financial product advice

In this joint submission with Industry Super Australia (ISA), AIST supports the introduction of guidance specific to digitally provided advice that ASIC has issued. We support the clarity that the draft regulatory guide provides, however have recommended that guidance be expanded to include additional issues, including scaling advice, triage and IT outsourcing.

27 Apr 2016 - CP 255: Remaking ASIC class orders on financial services disclosure

AIST has supported the remaking of two class orders dealing with product disclosure statements.

30 Mar 2016 - CP 253: Remaking and repealing ASIC class orders on dollar disclosure

This consultation paper sets out ASIC’s proposals to remake class orders [CO 04/1431], [CO 04/1433] and [CO 04/1435] on dollar disclosure, with the repeal of class orders [CO 04/1430] and [CO 04/1432]. AIST generally supports the proposals contained in this consultation paper. However, we believe that the relief presently provided for periodic statements in [CO 04/1435] is not appropriate and recommend that it no longer apply.

18 Mar 2016 - CP 251: Remaking class order on financial product advice – exempt documents

AIST supports the proposal to continue the relief contained in Class Order 03/606 [CO 03/606] beyond the sunset date. We agree that the relief provided is sensible and should be retained.

2 Mar 2016 - CP 247: Review and remediation programs and changes to record-keeping requirements

AIST supports the proposed ASIC guidance. The guidance would benefit from a stronger focus on independence of reviewers, as well as transparency and accessibility. The focus on whether a matter is systemic may provide a disincentive for licensees to positively act on issues that are easily addressed through a regular profiling program.

19 Feb 2016 - Exposure Draft TPB Information Sheets TPB(I) D30/2015 Cloud Computing and TPB(I) D31/2015 Confidentiality

AIST welcomes guidance for persons providing tax (financial) advice services to members of not-for-profit superannuation funds. We support this guidance but note that ideally, APRA should be consulted to ensure consistent guidance from regulators. AIST also takes the opportunity to remind the TPB that reconciliation of initial disclosure, consent and information gathering processes between TASA and Corporations Act requirements should be prioritised.

12 Feb 2016 - CP 249: Remaking ASIC class order on generic financial calculators

AIST supports the proposal to remake the class order on generic financial calculators, particularly given that the class order would otherwise be ‘sunsetted’. However, AIST believes that a better result going forward would be to examine both generic financial calculators and retirement income projections together. In this regard, AIST urges a review of retirement income projections, in line with the Government supporting the FSI recommendations in this regard. AIST undertook research into financial calculators and retirement income projections in 2014, in conjunction with VPR. Our research is available here.

25 Jan 2016 - Improved Superannuation Transparency

While AIST strongly supports the greater alignment of MySuper and Choice disclosure through the introduction of Choice dashboards, AIST is concerned that certain products (including platforms and legacy products) – in which there is considerable member money invested - are excluded. Alignment of MySuper and Choice is needed to protect members and ensure greater superannuation system efficiency. Greater alignment of Portfolio Holdings Disclosure to consumer disclosure to capture interposed vehicles is also needed.

24 Dec 2015 - Raising professional standards of financial advisers

AIST supports the proposed requirements for financial advisers to require a bachelor’s degree, a professional year and the passing of an exam. We also support the requirement of an industry-wide code of ethics administered by a body chosen by the Minister. AIST submit that the transitional provisions must ensure that practitioners have appropriate time to comply.

20 Oct 2015 - Unclaimed super changes (draft regulations)

AIST welcomes the exclusion of members using electronic means to communicate with their fund from being lost members, and the capacity for ERFs to transfer balances to members’ active accounts without their consent. However, the removal of lost member requirement to be ‘employer-sponsored’ should exclude ERFs transferring balances into active accounts. Overall, however, AIST call for a complete overhaul of lost and unclaimed super rules as they are unnecessarily complicated, confusing and not in members’ interests.

28 Sep 2015 - Draft spring repeal day bill

AIST supports the ATO being able to pay superannuation directly to persons with a terminal medical condition, and the eventual removal of the Lost Member Statement, but submits the LMS removal should be delayed by one year in in order to avoid a gap in lost member reporting and improve the quality of reporting. AIST also calls on the Government to simplify and streamline lost, uncontactable and unclaimed legislation.

8 Jul 2015 - Amendments to AML/CTF customer identification rules

AIST broadly supports the proposed amendments to Chapter 4 of the AML/CTF rules which relate to customer identification. We have noted in passing that there will be a cost incurred with the proposed changes to the safe harbour requirements. We also note that we have a preference for these changes not to be retrospective for administrative reasons.

15 Apr 2015 - Simplifying when a standard choice form is to be provided

AIST supports measures to simplify superannuation administration for employers. Removing the obligation to provide a superannuation choice form to temporary residents is not opposed, but the objective will be more efficiently achieved through the Government’s Single Touch Payroll initiative. Access of temporary residents to superannuation must be maintained, along with measures to avoid the unnecessary duplication of accounts.

31 Mar 2015 - AIST releases submission to final FSI report

AIST’s response to the Government on the Final Report of the Financial System Inquiry (FSI). The FSI Final Report makes a number of recommendations about superannuation and canvasses a range of policy options.

18 Mar 2015 - Treasury draft regulations – fairer taxation of excess non-concessional contributions

AIST supports these draft regulations, which give effect to the measure to allow members to withdraw excess non-concessional amounts and associated earnings.

16 Mar 2015 - ASIC Consultation Paper CP 227 – Disclosure and reporting requirements (29QC)

AIST supports ASIC’s proposed class order relief and guidance (Option 1) on s29QC consistency, and proposes measures to improve consumer comprehension and protection through comparable disclosure across all superannuation products.

27 Feb 2015 - RG 97 review – Fee and cost disclosure in PDSs and statements

AIST welcomes ASIC’s review of RG 97 and strongly supports ASIC’s work on improving disclosure of fees and costs. We recommend that RG 97b could be further improved through clarifying interposed vehicles, disclosing actual performance fees, not carving out listed vehicles, prescribing calculation methodologies and aligning with APRA reporting requirements. AIST also supports better disclosure of related party payments and a separate review of insurance disclosure.

26 Feb 2015 - Exposure draft TPB(I) D25/2015 – Sufficient experience for tax (financial) advisers (transitional)

The exposure draft issued by the TPB explains how the Board will interpret ‘sufficient experience’ and ‘competent standard’ for the purposes of registration as a tax (financial) adviser during the transitional period. AIST welcomes this guidance.

26 Feb 2015 - Exposure draft TPB(I) D25/2015 – Relevant experience for tax (financial) advisers

The TPB exposure draft information sheet outlines the relevant experience requirements for registered tax (financial) advisers. AIST supports the requirements as drafted in this sheet and welcomes this as vital guidance.

9 Feb 2015 - 2015-16 Pre-Budget submission

AIST’s pre-budget submission discusses a range of measures that we believe are in the public interest. Issues raised in our submission include improving the fairness of superannuation, reviewing the rules associated with the age of superannuation fund members and the fairness of existing arrangements for employees, as well as the transition to 12% SG. We also raised the question of inconsistencies associated with the financial supervisory levies and recommended an increase in funding to Indigenous identification schemes.

9 Feb 2015 - ASIC – CP 226 – Remaking class orders on secondary services and general advice

AIST strongly endorses the process of sun-setting legislative instruments after 10 years, unless action is taken to review them. While CP226 covers matters which are the subject of various reviews, these are outside the scope of CP226. Accordingly, AIST supports the renewal of CO 05/835, CO 04/1572, CO 04/1573 and CO 05/1195.

30 Jan 2015 - ASIC – CP 224 – Facilitating electronic financial services disclosure

AIST strongly supports the use of electronic disclosure, and would welcome the implementation of options 1-3 as outlined in CP224, including the opportunity to develop more innovative PDSs. AIST estimates that between 25-50% per annum of current communication costs could be saved. AIST recommends that a Working Group be established to help develop greater guidance, including consumer testing outcomes, defining e-addresses and electronic delivery, and refining storage, retrieval and archiving of electronic materials.

19 Jan 2015 - APRA – Draft Prudential Practice Guide SPG 223 Fraud Risk Management

AIST supports practical guidance on fraud risk but this should be consistently provided for banking, insurance and superannuation. The PPG should also address bribery, corruption, IT and outsourcing fraud risk, especially administration-related, in more detail, and provide more clarity about expectations and useful case studies.

17 Dec 2014 - Enhanced register of financial advisers

AIST welcomes these draft regulations as vital to consumers of financial advice. AIST supports the need for an enhanced register of financial advisers. However, we recommend that this be made through legislation rather than by regulation, given the seriousness of lack of proper prescription to protect consumers. We believe that additional information should be required to assist investors, and would support the inclusion of Financial Services Guides (FSGs) as part of the register.

5 Dec 2014 - Scrutiny of financial advice enquiry

AIST welcomes this Senate Economics inquiry into the scrutiny of financial advice. AIST recommends higher education standards, ongoing professional development and independently regulated codes of conduct combined with better resourcing of regulators. Penalties for poor advice should be reviewed to ensure they better repair customer impacts. In light of recent scandals and the lack of consistency, consumers deserve better.

6 Nov 2014 - SuperStream draft regulations - contributions pass-through

AIST supports the regulation of this requirement, and makes suggestions to improve its operation, in particular: - About 31 March 2015 there should be a mechanism allowing the contributions pass through start date of 1 July 2015 to be confirmed or delayed by up to one year. - There should be further, coordinated and consistent practical guidance provided in the explanatory statement and by the ATO. - The regulation should provide a safe harbour from prosecution during its first year of operation.

17 Oct 2014 - Draft ASIC Class Order: Disclosure of Fees

AIST is pleased once again to consult with ASIC on the subject of fee and cost disclosure. This round of consultation is public, and relates to a draft Class Order aimed at clarifying the requirements for superannuation and managed investment products. The draft Class Order stems from ASIC’s report REP 398 Fee and cost disclosure.

15 Sep 2014 - APRA – Draft reporting standards for select investment options

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority has issued a draft reporting standards and Discussion Paper seeking views on reporting standards for all RSE licensees to report information in respect of certain non-MySuper investment options, which are referred to as select investment options.

15 Sep 2014 - Senate Economics – FOFA Amendment Bill_2nd inquiry

This is the second inquiry on a bill before parliament to modify certain parts of the Future of Financial Advice (FOFA) reforms that were implemented last year. Changes include amendments to the adviser best interest duties, changes to conflicted remuneration and modifications to grandfathering arrangements.

1 Sep 2014 - SuperStream – pass through of employee details

In August 2014, Treasury commenced consultation on new draft regulations. Specifically, the draft amendment will require that if a superannuation fund offers a MySuper product then that superannuation fund is required to pass on contributions data it receives from any of its default employers relating to any other superannuation funds.

29 Aug 2014 - CP 221 – OTC derivatives disclosure

Derivative transaction reporting is the reporting of over-the-counter (OTC) derivative transaction information to trade repositories, and is a key element of the OTC derivatives reform agenda agreed to by the G20.

26 Aug 2014 - Response to Financial System Inquiry Interim Report

The Financial System Inquiry, chaired by David Murray, has released its interim findings in to the financial system of Australia. This is AIST's response to these findings.

6 Jun 2014 - National identity proofing guidelines

The Attorney-General’s Department has sought consultation on proposed new identity proofing guidelines designed to outline a best practice, risk-based approach to verifying the identity of a person by government agencies. The guidelines may also be useful for other government agencies, private sector or non-government organisations that undertake functions that require the verification of a person’s identity.

4 Apr 2014 - ATO – Revised transition schedule SuperStream standard

A revised draft of Schedule 1 – Transitional arrangements to the Superannuation Data and Payment Standards 2012 was made available for consultation, based upon feedback from industry since the release of the first consultation draft in December 2013. This draft builds on the previous draft by providing greater flexibility in arrangements for the transition-in process.

19 Mar 2014 - AUSTRAC – Revised draft AML/CTF rules relating to customer due diligence

In May 2013 a discussion paper titled Consideration of possible enhancements to the requirements for customer due diligence was released. The purpose of that paper was to seek stakeholder views on current industry practice and the need for amendments to Australia’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/CTF) customer due diligence (CDD) regime. Revised draft rules have been prepared in response to that discussion paper, and draft rules that were released in late 2013.

3 Feb 2014 - ASIC: CP 219 – Keeping superannuation websites up to date

This consultation paper from ASIC outlines options for the new requirements of section 29QB of the SIS Act for ensuring that fund websites are kept up to date, including remuneration and proxy voting disclosure.

24 Jan 2014 - AUSTRAC: Draft AML/CTF rules relating to customer due diligence

In May 2013 a discussion paper titled Consideration of possible enhancements to the requirements for customer due diligence was released. The purpose of that paper was to seek stakeholder views on current industry practice and the need for amendments to Australia’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/CTF) customer due diligence (CDD) regime.

20 Jan 2014 - ATO: Amendments to transitional arrangements, superannuation data and payment standard

This is a consultation draft provided by the ATO, which extends the timeframe for transitional arrangements, and provides an induction process to support the implementation of employer contributions in the Superannuation Data and Payment Standards 2012.

2 Jan 2014 - ATO SIRN: Verification of SMSF members and bank accounts

Submission to the ATO’s Superannuation Industry Relationship Network (SIRN), dealing with the specific issue of enabling super funds to verify both a person’s membership with an SMSF, as well as the bank account that belongs to an SMSF.

2 Jan 2014 - ATO SIRN: New employee engagement process

Submission to the ATO’s Superannuation Industry Relationship Network (SIRN), dealing with the specific issue of integration of ATO forms for TFN declaration, choice of superannuation fund and account consolidation at the time an employee commences work with a new employer.

2 Jan 2014 - ATO SIRN: Transfer of small inactive accounts from the ATO

Submission to the ATO’s Superannuation Industry Relationship Network (SIRN), dealing with the specific issue of transfers of small inactive accounts back to active member accounts.

21 May 2019 - Essential Research – Understanding retail fund members

AIST commission Essential Media to conduct research into the decision-making process of Australians who are in retail for-profit funds. With a growing body of evidence pointing to the persistent underperformance of many retail funds, particularly those in the non-default ‘choice’ sector, AIST was keen to explore how people end up in these funds and whether these members are aware of their fund’s performance. The research findings – from both qualitative focus group sessions and a quantitative online survey – suggest a large cohort of Australians are misinformed about how their super fund is performing and what type of fund they are in. AIST is calling on the Government and industry regulators to develop an easy-to-use online super comparator tool to help consumers make more informed decisions about their super.

16 Nov 2016 - Lifecycle MySuper Product Fees

This research investigates the relationship between MySuper asset allocations, investment fees and member outcomes. It concludes that the majority of funds use a fixed asset allocation that does not vary by age. Lifecycle options (i.e. investment options which do vary by age) are typically used by retail funds, rather than by not-for-profit funds. Where they are used by not-for-profit funds, de-risking (more conservative investments) usually starts at older ages than in retail funds. Building more conservative investment portfolios at earlier ages will see a reduction in member retirement outcomes.

15 Aug 2015 - Meeting members' advice needs

Australians increasingly recognise the need to save for their retirement, and the risk that they will not have enough super. However, with the system likely to contain $7 trillion in assets within 20 years, it is clear that members’ advice needs will need to be met. This survey, conducted in conjunction with Industry Super Australia shows the growth in the advice offerings of not-for-profit super funds and they rise to embrace this new challenge.

15 Dec 2014 - Superannuation projections: A discussion paper

AIST commissioned research to consider the design and regulatory treatment of superannuation projections. The aim of the research was to explore how the value of static superannuation projections to members can be improved. The research also examines interactive superannuation calculators by way of comparison with static superannuation projections.