Super funds continue strong in May

15 June 2020

The median balanced superannuation fund rose 2.1% in May after share markets rose on the back of the beginning of a staged re-opening of the economy and better than expected economic news, according to SuperRatings.

SuperRatings data found the financial year-to-date return for the median balanced option at the end of May was -1.6%. If super funds ended 30 June in the red, it would be fourth negative financial year for super since its inception in 1992, but it would be mild.

Since the start of 2020 to the end of May, the median balanced option fell an estimated 5.7%, with the 12-month return holding in positive territory at 0.5%.  In comparison, the S&P/ASX 200 index fell 13.9% over the calendar year to May and was down 10.0% over 12 months.

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The median growth option was down an estimated 6.8% in 2020 and was up 0.5% over 12 months, while the capital stable option fell only 2.1% since the start of 2020 and rose an estimated 1.2% over 12 months.

The median balanced pension option was down an estimated 6.1%, since the start of 2020, the median growth option was down 7.4%, and the median capital stable option was down 2.3%.

SuperRatings executive director, Kirby Rappell, said the funds were hit hard in February and March and since then had had two strong months.

“But super is a long-term game, and members should be cognisant of the steady gains super has delivered over a long period of time and will continue to deliver into the future,” Rappell said.

“What really matters for most members is whether funds are meeting their long-term objective, and by this metric super has been an incredible success. Funds came back strongly after the GFC and there’s good reason to believe they’ll do the same this time around.”

Since 1992, the median balanced option returned an average 7% per annum, above the common long-term objective of CPI plus 3.5%, SuperRatings said.

Median balanced option financial year returns since the introduction of the super guarantee

Source: SuperRatings
* FYTD estimate to end May 2020


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