SMSFs bullish on retirement goals

Almost 70 per cent of SMSF trustees are confident they will reach their retirement goals, according to research set to be released in full later this month.

The research, prepared for Nabtrade and The SMSF Association by CoreData, shows that SMSF trustees have firm expectations of hitting their desired income of $95,000 per annum in retirement.

The same cannot be said for non-SMSF trustees, with only 35 per cent confident they will achieve a desired income of $80,000 per annum. This compares with 34.3 per cent in 2013 and 37.1 per cent in 2012.

“A possible factor behind the retirement confidence gap is that trustees are considerably more likely than non-trustees to be receiving financial advice (52.8 per cent versus 29.5 per cent). Illustrating the value of financial advice, advised trustees are more likely to be confident that they are on track to achieve their desired retirement income (71.8 per cent versus 66.2 per cent),” the report said.

NAB's head of SMSF solutions, Gemma Dale, said SMSF trustees who take an active role in managing their savings help to ensure their continued confidence in how their retirement is shaping up.

“As we’ve seen over the last decade, SMSFs are not a flash in the pan. SMSF trustees are motivated to take control of their retirement savings, and are making well-informed investment choices to ensure they achieve the income they want in retirement.

“As these preliminary findings show, SMSF trustees continue to show a preference for direct investment and are looking for prudent ways to manage risk in uncertain times,” Ms Dale said.

SMSF Association chief executive Andrea Slattery said another interesting finding to come out of the report is the focus on risk by those trustees who understand their SMSF investment strategy.

“The most commonly cited factors in developing the strategy are the overall risk of the portfolio (65.8 per cent); diversification of the fund’s investments (63.4 per cent); and the risk of the fund’s investments (61.6 per cent).

“The prevailing attitude of de-risking is evident among trustees who allocate at least 10 per cent of their SMSF to cash – the asset class that is universally perceived as less risky,” Ms Slattery said.

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