Super fund members should brace themselves for 2019

Super fund members took a hit in the fourth quarter of 2018, and according to SuperRatings, it’s all downhill from here with further losses on the horizon due to market volatility and political risks.

The median return for the balanced option sat at -1.2 per cent in December, which contributed to a loss of almost five per cent for the quarter, but kept members just above the line for the year, with 0.6 per cent returns.

Growth option members on the other hand suffered a -1.7 per cent decline in December to make up a -0.3 per cent loss for the year, and members in the median Australian shares option experienced declines of -0.9 per cent for December to total -3.4 per cent for the year.

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Interestingly, the median international shares option recorded a staggering loss of -3.9 per cent, but performed better than the Australian shares option for the year, dropping to only -1.7 per cent.

SuperRatings executive director, Kirby Rappell, said volatility would likely be a feature of markets over the coming months, and members should expect ongoing fluctuation in returns.

“However, it’s important to keep a long-term perspective and recognise that super returns have been overwhelmingly positive over the last decade,” he said.

Despite recent declines, SuperRatings said super members remained well ahead over a ten-year period, with $100,000 invested in the median balanced option in 2008 now worth $208,264, and the median growth option now worth $215,051.

An investment of the same amount in the median Australian Shares option in 2008 is now worth $227,120, and in the median international shares, $233,166 over the same period.

According to the ratings house, QSuper remains the top performing balanced fund for the 10 years to 30 November 2018, followed by TelstraSuper Corp Plus, Rest, Equip MyFuture, CareSuper, AustralianSuper and Hostplus.

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