Super changes spark engagement

The Federal Government's rollout of the biggest changes to superannuation in more than a decade is seeing financial advisers and investors pay increased attention to portfolio management.

At the investor end of the spectrum, Colonial First State is reporting a surge in super contributions through the final months of 2016. Voluntary contributions to FirstChoice Super rose sharply in November, up 25% on contributions made in October, and about 20% higher than November 2015.

Colonial First State general manager of product and investments Peter Chun said the rise in voluntary contributions coincided with the passing of the government's super reforms, and he expects to see further increases in contributions as the June 2017 deadline approaches.

Chun added the next several months would be important for those approaching retirement or for people who have taken time out of the workforce.

"The reduction in non-concessional contribution caps will have a major impact, making this next period an extremely valuable opportunity for people to increase their super before the June cut-off," he said.

From the adviser and accountant perspective, SMSF administration software provider Class said the changes to super legislation is driving renewed interest in system automation - meaning a significant number of new portfolios on the Class system come from manual SMSF accountants using Excel and generic general ledgers.

Class' billable portfolios increased by more than 5700 in the December quarter, a company record during this period. It takes the firm's total billable portfolios to more than 130,000. Class estimates its market share of SMSFs billable portfolios at 21.7%.

In statement to the ASX, Class said it will release its December 2016 SMSF Benchmark Report to the market in February 2017. Some of the key metric in this report will include:

  • 58 - the median number of SMSFs per practice
  • 1046 - the number of Class Super subscriber practices
  • $161 billion - the total value of assets administered on Class Super across 127,806 SMSFs
  • $1.26 million - the average SMSF balance (broken down to $664,000 per SMSF member)

Read more: Class SuperColonial First StateFederal GovernmentASXExcelFirstChoice SuperPeter ChunSMSF Benchmark Report
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