Fees are the most important factor for Australians when choosing a superannuation fund, according to Industry Super Australia (ISA).
A survey by UMR research, commissioned by ISA, found 74 per cent of 1000 respondents said fees were either extremely important or very important.
This was followed by performance history (64 per cent), investment flexibility (60 per cent), not-for-profit fund (54 per cent), Australian investments (48 per cent), technology (35 per cent), and ethical/green investments (34 per cent).
The priorities remained the same even when broken down by generation cohorts.
ISA public affairs director, Matt Linden, said the survey results suggested a warning around the new disclosure rules that are to be implemented on 30 October. He said while promising transparency, the new rules would render fees charged by investment platforms opaque, and could mislead consumers.
“Consumers can have confidence that differences in net returns provide a solid indication of the investment strategies and the effect of the all up costs of a super fund,” Linden said.
“Unfortunately, with fee disclosure there is no simple and transparent way of comparing fees on various products across the entire system.”
Linden said Australians should not have to fear that product providers are potentially gaming fee and cost requirements, or be forced to pour through multiple disclosure statements just to be sure.
“As the financial watchdog, ASIC [Australian Securities and Investments Commission] needs to get these fee disclosure rules right for all Australians,” he said.
ISA also called on ASIC to delay its fee disclosure rules until the exemption on platform investments was overturned.