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More SMSF establishments means more advisers needed

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By Keeli Cambourne
26 May 2023 — 1 minute read

Opportunities for advisers in the SMSF sector continue to grow, according to statistics from a leading data insights company.

Wealth Data said the steady growth of SMSF establishments and the decline in adviser numbers have contributed to the shortfall in those who specialise in SMSFs.

From its analysis, Wealth Data said the average balance SMSF per member now stands at $752,504 which is slightly up on last quarter which was $750,246, but down from its peak of $792,701 recorded for March 2022.

The insight also showed that in the last three quarters, SMSF windups have been low where establishments have been reasonably consistent.

“Much of this could simply be an administrative issue and the next set of figures for June will be interesting to watch,” said Colin Williams, Data Manager at Wealth Data.

Mr Williams said current data shows that SMSFs as a share of total super assets is at 26 per cent and has hovered between 25 and 27 per cent since the records became available in 2017.

Further, the statistics revealed that the greatest portion of SMSFs falls into the size of less than $500,000 to $1 million (25.2 per cent) whereas the greatest portion of assets fall into the SMSF funds that are between $2 million and $5 million at 31.8 per cent.

However, the average and median balances in SMSF have a significant difference driven by a small number of very large funds.

In regard to assets held in the SMSF sector, Wealth Data found that the type and proportion of assets held continue to change.

Cash and deposits have reduced as a percentage of total assets from 24 per cent to less than 17 per cent. United trusts have grown strongly while property has been stable while cryptocurrency makes up only a fraction of assets at less than 0.2 per cent.

By distribution of taxable income, the $0 to $20,000 grouping has the most members most likely driven by the age group that have now retired.

As for new members, Wealth Data found that the largest age group is between $100,000 to $150,000 and driven by males.

The flow of funds in/out of SMSFs has been negative over recent years after considering the total costs (as a negative sum).

The amount of funds transferred in is greater than funds transferred out (rollovers between funds), but the gap is closing.

The expense of running an SMSF has remained steady with administration and operational costs currently running at around $3391 per member in 2020–21 compared to $3300 in 2016–2017.

More SMSF establishments means more advisers needed
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