Sustainability, Adequacy & Longevity

Sustainability, Adequacy & Longevity

AIST recognises that an individual’s retirement goals are varied.  However, we also endorse a retirement savings system which is sustainable, adequate and which supports Australians through a long retirement.  We aim to ensure that there is a retirement savings system capable of delivering retirement income to all Australians, particularly low income earners. Read more

Select from our range of publications on this topic below:

 

29 Mar 2017 - Productivity Commission fails to provide evidence that changing default fund system will benefit members

Proposed changes to the selection of default superannuation funds have the potential to put millions of working Australians at risk of poorer retirement outcomes, AIST said today.

23 Mar 2017 - Declining home ownership rates - the growing threat to retirement incomes: AIST research

Australia’s declining home ownership rate has emerged as a significant threat to the adequacy of Australia’s retirement income system, according to a new report commissioned by AIST.

7 Mar 2017 - Barriers preventing women from a dignified retirement outcome must be removed: International Women’s Day

AIST & WIS are calling for the removal of the $450 monthly income threshold which results in many women missing out on compulsory Superannuation Guarantee (SG) payments.

9 Feb 2017 - AIST calls on government to rule out increasing pension age to 70

AIST has backed calls for the Government to formally rule out its proposal to lift the Age Pension eligibility age to 70.

2 Dec 2016 - AIST welcomes Senate inquiry to investigate billions of dollars lost in unpaid super

AIST has welcomed the announcement of a Senate Economics References Committee inquiry into the impact of non-payment of the Superannuation Guarantee (SG).

23 Nov 2016 - New super changes will improve outcomes for low income earners, particularly women

AIST today welcomed the passage of the Government’s super tax reform package through both houses of Parliament.

10 Nov 2016 - Super changes that improve retirement outcomes for low income earners must be supported

AIST has urged all Federal Parliamentarians to support tax changes to superannuation that improve retirement outcomes for low income earners, including women.

20 Sep 2016 - Default fund selection process must be in members’ best interests

AIST today responded to the release of the Productivity Commission issues paper on alternative default models.

7 Jul 2016 - AIST welcomes move to improve access to superannuation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

New guidance issued by AUSTRAC will make it easier for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to access the superannuation system, AIST said today.

4 May 2016 - Flexible Budget measures on super contribution caps will help women catch up: AIST

Budget measures that provide flexibility around the new $25,000 super contribution cap limits announced last night will be particularly helpful for women who return to work after a career break, AIST said today.

3 May 2016 - Super measures will improve fairness and sustainability of super: AIST Budget commentary

Key superannuation measures announced in tonight’s Federal Budget are a necessary step toward a fairer and more sustainable super system, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees said today.

29 Apr 2016 - Time for real change not just tinkering around the edges to address gender retirement income gap

AIST and Women in Super has welcomed the recommendations of the Senate Inquiry into women’s economic security in retirement led by Senator Jenny McAllister.

17 Mar 2016 - 2016 AIST Mercer Super Tracker released: Government urged to revise Age Pension Asset Test

AIST and Mercer have called on the Government to urgently revise its new Age Pension Assets Test, with modelling showing the test will have a significant impact on the retirement outcomes of middle Australia.

16 Mar 2016 - New partnership to support Indigenous superannuation outcomes

AIST and First Nations Foundation have today announced a two-year partnership that will increase support for the Big Koori Super Day Out.

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.

16 Mar 2016 - AIST CEO Tom Garcia – Opening Address to CMSF 2016 Adelaide March 16th

AIST CEO Tom Garcia – Opening Address to CMSF 2016 Adelaide March 16th

9 Mar 2016 - Objective will protect super from ad-hoc policy changes and provide greater certainty: AIST

AIST today welcomed the Government’s move to begin the process of enshrining the objective of the superannuation system in legislation.

23 Feb 2016 - Focus of super tax reform should be on fairness not plugging Budget holes

The focus of superannuation tax reform should be on improving fairness rather than introducing Capital Gains Tax changes that will reduce retirement income for all Australians, AIST said today.

21 Feb 2016 - Low income earners mustn't be denied a dignified retirement

Allowing low-income earners to opt out of superannuation could result in an estimated 2 million Australians currently in the workforce being significantly worse off in retirement, AIST said today.

18 Feb 2016 - Review of super a timely opportunity to put spotlight on high fees and underperformance

The Productivity Commission Review of superannuation is a timely opportunity to put the spotlight on the high fees and the underperformance of some funds, particularly in the Choice environment, AIST said today

10 Feb 2016 - Fee report highlights the high price of choice for some Australians

A new report on fees and returns across Australia’s $2 trillion super sector has found that bank and retail-owned super funds offering “Choice” products are charging members up to four times more for underperforming investment options.

5 Feb 2016 - 12% super is responsible policy – end of story

Moving to 12% superannuation is a vital measure towards ensuring the majority of Australians achieve a comfortable standard of living in retirement, AIST said today.

21 Jan 2016 - Super must be used for retirement - not to pay off student debt

AIST today rejected calls suggesting superannuation could be used to pay down Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) debts.

20 Nov 2015 - Super reform won’t be enough to fix gender retirement savings gap

AIST is calling for all workforce, pay and super policies to be examined under a gender lens to improve the outcome for Australian women in retirement

5 Oct 2015 - New figures point to widening gender retirement savings gap

New figures suggesting a widening of the gender savings gap at retirement – particularly for women on low incomes – highlight the need for urgent policy action.

3 Oct 2015 - Update your super details: $480 million in ‘lost super’ to go to ATO

AIST is urging Australians to ensure that their superannuation account details are up to date following an increase to the ‘lost super’ threshold requiring small inactive accounts to be transferred to the Australian Tax Office (ATO).

21 Sep 2015 - Reducing penalty for late super payments dilutes consumer protection

AIST is calling on Government to reconsider changes to the Superannuation Guarantee Charge reducing penalties for employers not meeting their obligations to pay superannuation to their employees

3 Sep 2015 - New research highlights the dangers in a one-size fits all approach to post-retirement

Super funds may need to offer their members more than one default retirement income stream, new modelling has suggested.

18 Aug 2015 - Senate inquiry a welcome opportunity to address gender retirement income gap

AIST welcomes the announcement of a Senate Inquiry into improving retirement outcomes for Australian women.

17 Aug 2015 - Government needs to cut red tape to improve Indigenous super outcomes

The Indigenous Superannuation Working Group has called on major political parties to elevate Indigenous superannuation outcomes onto the agenda of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG).

3 Aug 2015 - Let's get real about super - busting the $1 million retirement myth

AIST and Australia's biggest super fund, AustralianSuper are calling for a "super reality check" to ensure Australians have a better understanding about the level of income they can expect in retirement.

29 Jul 2015 - Tax Inquiry can help ensure super delivers for women

AIST and WIS today supported a Senate review of the retirement savings gap for women and urged the Government to prioritise the tax reform of superannuation as a significant step towards improving retirement outcomes for women.

7 Jul 2015 - Involuntary retirees should not be denied early access to their super

Raising the age at which people can access their super could see the level of involuntary retirees blow out to more than half the Australian workforce, AIST said today.

2 Jun 2015 - Fairness of superannuation tax concessions must be a priority of the Tax Review

The fairness and sustainability of superannuation tax concessions should be top priority of the Tax Review, AIST said today.

12 May 2015 - Pension measurements a good first step – long-term super strategy must be next

AIST response to 2015 Federal Budget

22 Apr 2015 - Emphasis on fairness and sustainability is a welcome contribution to superannuation tax debate

Labor’s announcement of a new super tax policy is an important contribution to the Tax Review and broader national debate on superannuation, AIST said today.

15 Apr 2015 - Employment discrimination inquiry puts timely focus on involuntary retirement

AIST has welcomed today’s announcement that the Australian Human Rights Commission will conduct an inquiry into employment discrimination against older Australians and Australians with a disability.

19 Mar 2015 - Gender gap, tax equity & lack of older workers, prove to be weak spots in super system

The AIST-Mercer Super Tracker – launched today at AIST’s Conference of Major Superannuation Funds on the Gold Coast – has been jointly developed by AIST and Mercer to provide an objective means of assessing super and road test new ideas and policies. The initial score for the Tracker is 64.9 out of a possible 100.

19 Mar 2015 - 2025 research infographic

An infographic of key findings from our joint research with BNP Paribas "2025: what will the superannuation industry look like in a decade?"

13 Mar 2015 - Super spotlight on intergenerational challenges, tax equity, investments, digital disruption and more at next week’s Conference of Major Super Funds (March 18-29)

AIST's flagship conference - the Conference of Major Superannuation Funds (CMSF) – is set to attract more than 1,000 key players from Australia’s $1.9 trillion super industry.

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.

5 Mar 2015 - IGR provides no evidence for Government to lift ‘retirement age’ to 70 years

AIST has called on the Government to review its proposal to lift the Age Pension eligibility age to 70 by 2035, following Intergenerational Report (IGR) projections that show future pension costs in our ageing population are manageable in existing policy settings.

22 Jan 2015 - Change to super payment threshold would penalise low income/casual workers

AIST has urged the Government to reject calls from the Board of Taxation to change the superannuation payment threshold for low income and casual workers to $1350 a quarter.

9 Jan 2015 - AIST- Mercer Super Tracker to provide basis for informed changes to the superannuation system

AIST and Mercer are collaborating to develop an industry first “super tracker” that will set the benchmark for evaluating the Australian superannuation system.

7 Dec 2014 - AIST welcomes FSI focus on removing politics from super and giving MySuper a fair go

AIST today welcomed the release of the Financial System Inquiry report, which recognises the need to ensure the super system is working effectively and efficiently and delivering positive retirement outcomes for members.

13 Nov 2014 - AIST welcomes recognition of Age Pension in retirement income forecasting

AIST welcomes today’s announcement from ASIC that will allow superannuation funds to include an estimate of a member’s age pension together with the member’s super forecast.

2 Oct 2014 - New MySuper data highlights need for independent default fund selection

New MySuper data released today highlights the need for an independent body to select default funds from the MySuper pool, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said today.

1 Oct 2014 - Call to move default bank-owned super into low-fee MySuper

AIST is calling on the Government to accelerate the release of super savings from high-fee bank-owned default super funds into lower fee MySuper products.

1 Oct 2014 - Full MySuper disclosure will lead to better consumer outcomes

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has welcomed the announcement from the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority (APRA) that it will be publishing comprehensive statistics on all MySuper products.

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*.

1 Aug 2014 - Dipping into super to buy a home threatens retirement income security

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) today warned against the dangers of using superannuation to tackle the nation’s housing affordability challenges.

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.

7 Jul 2014 - Industry welcomes Palmer support for Low Income Super Scheme

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees and Women in Super have welcomed today’s news that senators from the Palmer United Party intend to vote for the retention of the Low Income Superannuation Contribution (LISC) scheme. AIST’s Deputy President and the Chair of Women in Super Cate Wood said by voting to support the LISC, the senators were supporting 3.6 million working Australians who currently benefit from the Scheme.

25 Jun 2014 - Open letter to Clive Palmer

More than 30 prominent signatories from the superannuation industry, business, academia, women’s organisations and policy and community groups have signed an open letter calling on Mr Clive Palmer to help save the Low Income Superannuation Contribution (LISC) scheme.

13 May 2014 - Federal budget measures set to widen retirement income gap

The peak body for the $600 billion not-for-profit super sector, The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) said last night's Budget measures could create further inequity in Australia’s retirement income system over the long term. AIST CEO Tom Garcia said AIST was disappointed and concerned that the Superannuation Guarantee (SG) rate would be frozen for four years and would only reach 12% in 2022/23 instead of the original plan to reach 12% by 2019/20. This is the second change proposed to the legislated schedule in 12 months and adds another year to the timeline.

7 May 2014 - Tax cuts should give everyone a fair go – Government urged not to abandon super tax refund for low income earners

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has urged the Federal Government not to abandon existing superannuation equity measures for low income earners in the upcoming Federal Budget. The Government has said it will repeal the Low Income Superannuation Contribution (LISC) scheme that has provided a super boost of up to $500 a year for earning less than $37,000 year. The scheme, introduced two years ago, benefits an estimated 3.6 million Australians, or nearly one third of the total workforce – many of them part-time workers.

2 May 2014 - Changes to retirement policy and the Age Pension must not be piecemeal

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has today cautioned the Government about making piecemeal changes to the nation’s retirement income policies following the release of the National Commission of Audit report. AIST CEO Mr Tom Garcia said while AIST recognised the need to improve the long-term sustainability and equity of the nation’s retirement income system, changes to the Age Pension and superannuation tax concessions should not be considered in isolation but rather as part of a wider review of our retirement incomes system.

2 May 2014 - Government announcement to raise Age Pension eligibility age is not the answer

The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) is pleased that today’s Government announcement will not have an impact on people approaching retirement but is concerned this is an ad hoc decision on retirement incomes policy.

15 Apr 2014 - Working longer may not work for all: up to 40% of Australians don’t get to choose when they retire

The peak super body for the not-for-profit super sector – the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) - today warned that any rise in the retirement age must be accompanied by measures to protect older Australians who are unable to work longer.

25 Mar 2014 - Generation Y and super the story isn't all bad

Recent research commissioned by the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) has revealed that Generation Y may not be as disinterested in their superannuation as previously thought.

24 Mar 2014 - The high cost of involuntary retirement

A more flexible approach to retirement may be needed to account for the significant minority of older Australians who are forced to leave the workforce early, the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees said today.

17 Feb 2014 - Change has never been something that the not-for-profit superannuation sector has shied away from – quite the opposite.

Click here to read Tom's op ed piece published in The Age.

3 Feb 2014 - Summit to tackle gender inequality at retirement

Speaking at today’s Women’s Super Summit in Melbourne, the president of the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) and chair of Women in Super (WIS) said Australia’s superannuation system - as currently structured - would continue to deliver significantly poorer outcomes for women than men without new initiatives to bridge the gender savings gap.

7 Mar 2017 - Consumer protections in the financial services industry

The Senate Economics References Committee is undertaking this inquiry into consumer protections in the banking, insurance and financial services industry. AIST believes that the numerous exemptions from the regulatory framework for superannuation currently afforded choice (i.e. non-MySuper) products and investment options, platforms and legacy products should be removed to ensure that the retirement savings of all superannuation fund members are equally protected.

17 Feb 2017 - Senate Economics: SG non-payment

Employer superannuation non-compliance remains a serious problem and calls for an automated and systematic response, as well as requiring more resources for managing complaints. AIST argues for ATO and Government to prioritise initiatives to address these challenges and for the success of these initiatives to be monitored and evaluated. Unfinished ATO initiatives should be reactivated, and the new initiatives of Single Touch Payroll and more regular reporting of contributions should be designed to improve compliance. Other SuperStream measures should also be given specific compliance objectives.

2 Feb 2017 - Means testing of retirement income streams

AIST considers that the role of social security in prioritising Comprehensive Income Products for Retirement (CIPRs) as recommended by the Financial System Inquiry needs to be addressed in this discussion paper. We believe that the focus on neutrality is not properly reconciled with Government policy and our submission points out that people should be compensated for trading in flexibility.

19 Jan 2017 - Pre-Budget Submission 2017

AIST welcomes the opportunity to present our Pre-Budget submission for 2017-18. We do not endorse superannuation being used for deficit reduction to a greater extent than other industry segments or for untested superannuation policy announcements to be made on Budget night. The current package of superannuation reforms should be implemented and allowed to settle, and KPIs should be developed and used to assess system performance against the primary and subsidiary objectives by an independent, publicly-funded body. AIST recommends a range of changes to improve superannuation for consideration.

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.

28 Oct 2016 - Alternative Default Models inquiry (issues paper)

This inquiry is to investigate alternative models to existing default fund allocation arrangements. AIST argues that members’ best interests must drive the default fund selection process, and that consumer protection must remain in place to protect the millions of Australians who choose not to choose their superannuation fund. We also argue that the existing default system must be the baseline for any comparisons.

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.

21 Oct 2016 - Backpacker super to be taxed at 95%

This is AIST's submission to the Senate Economics inquiry into changes to taxation for people on working holiday visas. Included in the package of bills is a measure that will increase the effective taxation on Departing Australia Superannuation Payments to 95.75% for holders of 417/462 visas. AIST opposes this measure as we believe it to be inequitable.

10 Oct 2016 - Superannuation reform package tranche 2

The second tranche of superannuation reform will implement a transfer balance cap at retirement of $1.6 million, a reduction in the concessional contributions cap to $25,000 p.a., catch-up concessional contributions, removal of anti-detriment provisions, and changes to taxation of retirement income streams. AIST notes considerable complexity for transfer balance caps, but generally supports most measures. We continue to oppose measures to reduce the concessional cap, especially for over 50s.

16 Sep 2016 - Superannuation reform package – Budget superannuation tax measures

AIST supports the deductibility of personal contributions, increased eligibility of tax offsets for spouse contributions and the revised arrangements for the low income tax offset. AIST suggests the general exclusion of defined befit funds from the deductibility measure, and a transitional mechanism for the LISTO.

16 Sep 2016 - Superannuation reform package – Objective of superannuation

In conjunction with other industry associations, AIST seeks that the Government consult further prior to introduction of the Bill. We seek the amendment of the primary objective to include reference to providing an adequate income that delivers a comfortable retirement. AIST also seeks an additional subsidiary objective of increasing national savings; recognition of insurance as key part of the ‘sole purpose test’; Parliamentary committee review of statements of compatibility; and the development of tools to assess compatibility.

13 Sep 2016 - Submission on Productivity Commission draft report on superannuation efficiency and competitiveness

AIST welcomes the Productivity Commission's draft report and its focus on developing appropriate evidence-based measures to assess the efficiency and competitiveness of the system

2 Jun 2016 - Proposed Financial Institutions Supervisory Levies for 2016-17

While AIST welcomes consultation on proposed financial levies for 2016-2017, AIST is once again concerned that insufficient detail renders the proposal as non-compliant with the Government’s Cost Recovery Guidelines and Charging Framework. AIST calls for proposed levies papers to attach Cost Recovery Impact Statements and the outcomes of the Regulator Performance Framework from all regulators (even if in draft). While not raised in the proposal, AIST firmly believes implementation of an ASIC user-pays model should not occur without further consultation. We seek information as to how the additional approx. $120million funding to ASIC will be raised.

2 Jun 2016 - AUSTRAC Industry Contribution 2016-17

AIST welcomes the opportunity to comment on the Consultation Paper. AIST seeks clarification firstly as to the basis for excluding the AUSTRAC Industry Contribution from the requirements of the Government’s Cost Recovery Guidelines, and secondly why so many entities are excluded from the Industry Contribution (this being difficult to gauge without a Cost Recovery Impact Statement having been prepared).

22 Apr 2016 - Productivity Commission inquiry into superannuation efficiency and competitiveness

6 Apr 2016 - Objective of superannuation

AIST supports the primary objective for the superannuation being to provide retirement income for all Australians that, when combined with or in replacement of any public pension, ensures a reasonably comfortable living standard, in the spirit of fairness within and between generations.

10 Feb 2016 - 2016-17 Pre-Budget Submission

AIST does not support the Budget being used to implement changes to the superannuation tax environment without considering the outcomes of the tax inquiry process and retirement incomes review, as well as the setting of objectives for the superannuation system. We recommend that these are finalised prior to any hasty policy changes driven by fiscal short-termism. However, we continue to support Budget action on a number of specific measures to improve fairness and efficiency of the system.

27 Jan 2016 - Extending superannuation choice to enterprise agreements and workplace determinations

AIST supports the principle of choice in superannuation but argues this has to be provided in a way that does not leave consumers worse off, and operates in an environment of meaningful disclosure and consumer protections. In the event the Government decides to proceed with this legislation, AIST proposes that the existing exemption remain for enterprise agreements where superannuation benefits in excess of the community standard are negotiated between the employer and their employees. This submission suggests ways to clarify transition and the selection of default funds.

8 Jan 2016 - Willing to Work: National Inquiry into Employment Discrimination Against Older Australians and Australians with Disability

AIST’s vision is for a better retirement future for all Australians. A key component of a better retirement future for all Australians is to better enable older Australians to continue working if they are able to do so, and to contribute to their superannuation benefit. Superannuation policy is one driver of workforce participation. Superannuation policies should only be examined within the context of a framework that sets system objectives, Key Performance Indicators, and a governance mechanism to assess progress. The AIST-Mercer Super Tracker is a robust methodology for tracking the objectives of the Australian superannuation system.

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.

18 Dec 2015 - IGT review of employer obligations compliance activities

AIST supports the removal of red tape for employers, however we believe that this must not come at the expense of employees’ entitlements. AIST does not support the existing model where a breach must be reactively reported by employees to the ATO, and supports the use of Single Touch Payroll, SuperStream and other technological improvements to more proactively monitor employers for non-payment. AIST believes that enforcement of other types of superannuation contribution by employers must urgently be addressed.

30 Oct 2015 - Senate Economics review of economic security in retirement for women

The superannuation gender gap is a pressing issue. AIST welcomes this review by the Senate Economics References Committee, and believes that this review, combined with the Government’s response to the Financial System Inquiry, Retirement Incomes Review and Taxation review forms an excellent opportunity to ensure that superannuation policy has a holistic gender lens applied. Although we note that the cause of the gender gap is not confined to superannuation, we believe that transparent objectives and agreed KPIs for the superannuation system will ensure that policy changes are appropriately road-tested prior to implementation.

18 Sep 2015 - Changes to the SG charge

AIST supports existing measures to ensure members’ contributions are paid in a timely manner. The proposed changes reduce the bases of the SG charge shortfall amount and the nominal interest payable, reducing disincentives to employers. AIST does not support this measure and calls for this to be abandoned.

10 Sep 2015 - AIST’s final supplementary response to tax discussion paper

AIST is pleased to provide our final supplementary submission to the tax discussion paper. AIST supports a comprehensive review of superannuation and retirement incomes which takes into account the broader environment of the system, rather than considering tax changes on their own. Our submission is intended as an introduction to the AIST Mercer Super Tracker, through which we have modelled a number of proposed changes to superannuation. Our modelling, which has been undertaken by AIST in conjunction with Mercer, is attached as a separate paper.

24 Jul 2015 - Tax discussion paper retirement incomes review

Expanding on our initial submission to the Tax Inquiry, AIST details a process for a robust and evidence-based review of retirement arrangements, involving a summit on the objectives of retirement incomes system, and followed by a detailed and methodical technical review and legislative support. Tools such as the AIST Mercer Super Tracker will be needed to provide measures of success in relation to sustainability, adequacy and fairness – especially to improve the lot of disadvantaged Australians.

1 Jul 2015 - Joint submission: Cooperative, mutual and member-owned firms

Senate Economics is conducting an inquiry into the role, importance, and overall performance of cooperative, mutual and member-owned firms in the Australian economy. AIST has joined with Industry Super Australia and ME Bank to argue that, free from conflicts of interest, the quasi-mutual structure has delivered superior returns to members. Further, we recommend that the Government consider whether reform is necessary to address the conflicts of interest that emerge when for-profit banks operate for-profit wealth management subsidiaries.

19 Jun 2015 - Changes to assets test

AIST welcomes the inquiry on this Bill. Our comments are limited to Schedule 3 which contains the proposed changes to the assets test. AIST points out that the proposed changes will have a negative impact on fairness in the superannuation system and recommend that changes be considered in the broader contexts of taxation and superannuation.

1 Jun 2015 - Response to tax white paper

The Government’s tax discussion paper, “Re:think” provides 66 questions on how to reform Australia’s taxation system. AIST’s submission explores the need for principles and objectives for the superannuation and tax systems aimed at providing fairness, sustainability and certainty to the superannuation system, and asks whether taxation should be considered on its own, or as part of a package which includes age pension means testing.

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.

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.

24 Oct 2014 - Reform of excess non-concessional contributions tax

This consultation contains the exposure draft of legislation which contains reforms to the excess non-concessional contributions tax regime, allowing affected members to withdraw excess amounts.

19 Sep 2014 - Promoting SG compliance – ANAO audit in progress

This is an audit in progress that is presently being undertaken by the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO). The objective of the audit is to assess the effectiveness of the ATO to support employers to comply with their SG obligations and identify and deal with those who do not.

17 Sep 2014 - Treasury Legislative Amendment – Deregulation

As part of the Government’s deregulation agenda, a variety of measures have been proposed in this exposure draft, relating to taxation, superannuation and shareholdings in certain financial sector companies.

5 Sep 2014 - Review of retirement incomes

AIST is pleased to respond to the government’s review of retirement incomes. Our response to this review recommends that a broader review of retirement incomes be undertaken involving consideration of tax, tax environments and social security. AIST’s submission points to the issues that there is no perfect retirement income product for all retirees, and recommends that trustees build a strategy that addresses the retirement needs of their members.

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.

31 Mar 2014 - Initial submission to the Financial System Inquiry

The Financial System Inquiry, chaired by David Murray AO, is charged with examining how the financial system could be positioned to best meet Australia's evolving needs and support Australia's economic growth. AIST’s initial submission examines regulation, the issues of adequacy, sustainability and longevity, diversity and governance, systemic risk, ensuring the system delivers and consideration of post-retirement solutions.

31 Jan 2014 - Pre-budget submission 2014-15

The Treasurer, the Hon. Joe Hockey MP, has called for submissions ahead of the federal Budget in May. AIST’s submission focuses on measures to reduce red tape, measures to reduce inequity and measures to improve sustainability and adequacy.

23 Mar 2017 - No place like home: the impact of declining home ownership in retirement

Research completed for Saul Eslake for AIST.

19 Dec 2016 - AIST/WIS 2016 Women’s Super Summit report

AIST and Women in Super (WIS) held the second Women’s Super Summit in Melbourne on Friday 18th November, 2016 to look at ways to close the super gender gap. This report is a summary of the presentations and group discussions from the day.

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.

16 Aug 2016 - Expenditure patterns in retirement

This research, which examines spending patterns of Australians, finds that the expenditure of most retirees is modest, regardless of their level of income. The research – commissioned by AIST and conducted by the Monash Business School’s Australian Centre of Financial Studies (ACFS) – finds that 80 percent of retirement households reported expenditure levels considered to be the most basic standard of living for retirees. The research is based on data from the 2014 Household, Income and Labour Dynamics (HILDA) survey, and compares the data over a twelve year period.

15 Sep 2015 - Modelling of superannuation tax proposals

AIST and Mercer have developed the Super Tracker to assess the progress of Australia’s retirement income system based on the available evidence and to make important contributions to the discussion about the system’s ongoing development including the fairness of taxation arrangements. This paper focuses on how the Australian super system stacks up on fairness, adequacy, and sustainability.

31 Aug 2015 - Superannuation in the post-retirement phase

The Financial System Inquiry (FSI) recommended that trustees develop a pre-selected option for members to receive their superannuation in retirement. But how might trustees go about developing these? Funds do not necessarily have homogeneous memberships, so there is no ‘one-size fits all’ solution. This paper, developed by the Australian Centre for Financial Studies (ACFS) for AIST examines a series of hypothetical members to ascertain what needs trustees will need to consider.

3 Aug 2015 - Super Reality Check - Busting the $1 million retirement myth

One of the great things about Australia’s compulsory superannuation is that it is founded on the belief that all Australians deserve a dignified retirement. Yet when it comes to debating the big issues around superannuation – the objectives of the system, the tax rules or indeed, what makes for a dignified retirement - all too often the debate centres on the expectations of high income earners as opposed to what is relevant for the majority of working Australians.

15 Mar 2015 - 2025: What will the superannuation industry look like in a decade

AIST in conjunction with BNP Paribas Securities Services, undertook research to identify key longer-term issues the superannuation industry may face. By asking where you think the industry will be in 2025 we sought to consider how to best shape our industry, overcome challenges and maximise opportunities for asset owners, managers and investors.

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.

28 Mar 2014 - Involuntary Retirement, Characteristics and Implications

AIST commissioned The Australian Centre for Financial Studies to identify cohorts who retire involuntarily. Such cohorts would be adversely affected by any changes to preservation age and age pension age and would need policy recognition. Since AIST commissioned the report, there has been considerable political and media discussion regarding lifting of the preservation age and the age pension age.