27 September 2023

Australians neglecting their future retirement

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Cassandra Baldini* says a growing number of people are neglecting their superannuation funds in favour of investing.

Investment options continue to flood the market meaning there is no shortage of places to stash your cash, but one super fund says the modern-day investor has lost sight of their superannuation.

While more Aussies are engaged with investing, they are neglecting the most important asset of all, Equip Super says.

“An increased interest in non-traditional investing is placing many Australians at risk of retiring with less super, and consequently less financial security,” said Equip chief executive Scott Cameron.

A survey of more than 2000 Australians commissioned by the fund found many are becoming more adventurous in their methods of saving and investing following the pandemic.

The survey revealed one in five or 20 per cent invested for the first time in shares, ETFs, NFTs, cryptocurrency, super or other investment products, while 14 per cent have increased the amount they invest since the pandemic started.

“Despite an increase in new methods of investing, the study suggests there are “gaping holes” in general knowledge when it comes to banking superannuation away for retirement,” said Cameron.

The study further revealed that people fit into three distinct categories when it comes to superannuation awareness.

Almost one in three Australians or 28 per cent reported that they had “no idea” how much super they had.

The balance of the population said they knew but with varying degrees of confidence.

A third or 37 per cent reported they knew the “ballpark” amount, while the other 35 per cent explained they knew “to the nearest thousand”.

“While more investment options are emerging, superannuation remains one of the most important financial assets,” commented Cameron.

“It’s concerning that so many Australians have no idea how much they’ve actually saved after years of hard work.”

Entering a new age of investing, with new products like cryptocurrency and NFTs reveals public interest is there.

“Australians are clearly eager to educate themselves on how to boost their savings and set themselves up for a comfortable future or prepare for the unexpected.

“But this shouldn’t be to the detriment of tried and tested investment products, like super,” Cameron said.

*Cassandra Baldini is a senior journalist at Financial Standard.

This article first appeared at financialstandard.com.au

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