SMSFs eye offshore assets
Wednesday, 11 December 2013 12:10pm

Self-managed super fund (SMSF) investors have signaled much stronger appetite for investing offshore compared to their non-self-managed counterparts.

According to the latest Certitude Global Investing Intentions Index (CGIII) report, 50% of SMSF investors who plan to invest offshore plan to do so in the next three months.

High net worth investors have also signaled their intent to look further afield for investment opportunities. The CGIII for this segment of the market rose to 190 points in November compared to 174 points for all active investors in the same period. This marks the highest level of the Index for HNW investors to date.

The CGIII Report, produced each month by Investment Trends, collates the views of over 700 actively engaged investors. On the whole, 43% of all investors surveyed believe they need more international assets in their investment portfolio, up eight percentage points from October. This is in line with a corresponding decrease in the proportion expecting healthy growth in the Australian economy (59%, down six percentage points from October).

"Last month we saw a strong uptick in Australian investors' intentions to invest overseas and this month that intention was again signalled clearly, particularly from HNW and SMSF investors," Certitude Global Investments chief executive Craig Mowll said.

"These investors can often be leading indicators of the rest of the market in identifying and taking advantage of the vast world of investment opportunity that exists outside of Australia."

Mowll added that the CGIII findings suggest that investors are not fully aligned with one geographic location or another, potentially lacking knowledge on where to allocate offshore assets.

"We are starting to see a convergence in terms of the overseas markets that investors are paying attention to when thinking about allocating offshore. One possible explanation is confusion from investors on where they should go to achieve true diversification benefits from international investing."

When asked about barriers to investing overseas, 21% said 'insufficient funds' was their main barrier, a large increase from 6% citing this reason in October. Of the top five barriers cited however, only one reflects concern in markets while the rest relate to a lack of knowledge or research available - 9% of investors say they don't know enough about international investing and 7% said lack of research deterred them from allocating overseas.

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