APRA funds’ infighting leading to SMSF leakage

One advocacy group has suggested disputes between retail and industry funds are contributing to the outflow of members to the SMSF sector.

Taxpayers Australia's superannuation products and services manager, Reece Agland, said industry and retail super fund lobby groups should be focused on putting their members first instead of their own self-interests.

“Focus is being taken away from building the best outcomes for members. It is no wonder people are leaving to set up their own SMSFs,” Mr Agland said.

“On the one hand, industry super funds are petrified of losing their protected status in awards and are throwing mud at the retail sector in the hope they don’t have to compete on value and performance.

“So for example, there was a large withdrawal from the account which is a personal payment to a trustee, and that didn’t get picked up in the audit, we’d be concerned about that,” he said.

“On the other hand, retail funds with their outdated fee models and conflicted advice are doing whatever they can to increase their funds under management and thus increase their fees,” he said.

Mr Agland also said competition between funds and fund sectors is good for members; however, instead of focusing on achieving better results for members they are spending more time on “protecting their current positions”.

“The time has come for the government to ignore the blatant self-interest of all involved parties and foster more competition around the low-fee MySuper, by allowing greater choice of funds in the default sector,” Mr Agland said.

“Competition, not structure, will be the only thing to drive prices down and improve outcomes for members."

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