Retirement income

Unpaid super costs workers dearly, new research finds

Workers on the verge of retirement who are short changed on their superannuation entitlements have nest eggs worth tens of thousands of dollars less than those who are paid correctly, new research shows.

Using the latest 2013-14 data from the Australian Tax Office (ATO), Industry Super Australia found that people aged 60 to 64 earning between $50,000 and $75,000 whose employers did not correctly pay their Super Guarantee (SG), had overall super balances $35,089 or almost 40 per cent less than those who were.

Survey shows Australians delaying retirement

A new survey has found the average age that Australians intend to retire has risen from 58 to 61 in the last two years.

But the Roy Morgan Single Source survey of 50,000 people also showed that the average gross wealth per person, excluding owner-occupier homes, was just $286,000 in 2016, up just 3.6 per cent since 2014.

The overall conclusion from the survey was that on average, intending retirees will be relying on some government benefits for some time to come, even with the changes to the eligibility rules.

Many employers pocket super benefits, study shows

A new study has found that many employers are effectively pocketing some or all of the benefits of employees who salary sacrifice super contributions from lower incomes.

The analysis, undertaken by Industry Super Australia and Construction and Building Unions Superannuation (Cbus), showed an estimated 2.4 million Australians are not being paid their legal super entitlements.

Plan now for pension assets test changes

National Seniors is urging its members to check if they will be impacted by the Age Pension assets test which comes into force from 1 January 2017.

Media reports this week have said that affected pensioners will not be officially notified until Centrelink sends them a letter shortly before Christmas.

National Seniors Chief Executive Dagmar Parsons said some older people are very anxious and need help to understand how the changes will affect them, so they can consider their options.

Saving for retirement stresses workers

The need to save for retirement is a key reason for financial stress in Australian workers.

New research by AMP for its 2016 Financial Wellness report shows that workers’ confidence in their finances has declined in the past two years, from 54 per cent of people confident in 2014, compared to 48 per cent in 2016.

AMP spokesperson Vicki Doyle said financial stress was common in the Australian workers with over 2.8 million employees, or one in four, under financial stress in 2016.  

Seniors calling for higher super concessional cap

National Seniors has this week called on the Federal Government to retain the higher concessional contributions cap for those aged 50 and over to improve the adequacy of their retirement income.

Responding to the latest round of proposed legislative changes under the superannuation reform package, Chief Executive Dagmar Parsons said older workers should be allowed to make higher contributions.

Superannuation Reform Package Exposure Bills

National Seniors has restated concerns about the proposed objective of superannuation and calls on the Federal Government to undertake further work to develop an objective that will better shape future superannuation policy. 

Submission on Objective of Superannuation Discussion Paper

National Seniors recommends the legislated objective clearly state the purpose of superannuation as supplementing the Age Pension and other voluntary savings, with wording that includes ‘dignity in retirement’, ‘financial security’, ‘lifetime savings’ and ‘comfortable standard of living’.

Plans to tighten pension portability

A new rule proposed by the Coalition Government would reduce the amount of time pensioners can travel overseas before having their pension adjusted.

If passed into law, the change would come into force from 1 January 2017.

National Seniors Chief Executive Dagmar Parsons said the proposal to tighten Age Pension portability unfairly targets many older people who choose to take an extended overseas trip to visit their family and friends.

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