Top performing super funds set to end the year on a high

The top 10 performing super funds are set to end the financial year on a high.

Australian money, calculator and notepad

Australia’s top performing super funds, led by not-for-profits, are on track to end the financial year on a high, with median balanced options delivering double digit returns.

Despite recent market weakness in June and Wall Street losses in May, the median balanced option has returned 10.3 per cent for the financial year to May. A soft June may be the only factor that prevents all top 10 funds returning double digits.

Nine of the top 10 performing funds are not-for-profit, with the top funds managing to exceed 12 per cent for the financial year to date. Rolling five-year returns are also holding above 10 per cent per annum.

Here are the top performing funds for the financial year to date to 31 May 2017


“Our outlook for the remainder of the calendar year 2017 is broadly positive, but we note markets are starting to look expensive,” said SuperRatings Chairman Jeff Bresnahan.

“Markets have had time to digest the immediate aftermath of elections in the UK and France, and hopefully this will relieve some of the political uncertainty we have experienced recently. Major central banks are either tightening or signalling the end of the easing cycle, so we will see if and when the RBA follows suit.”

Even longer-term returns for super continue to outperform most funds’ CPI targets, with the seven-year return sitting at 8.3 per cent per annum and the 10-year return at 4.9 per cent per annum, although that figure is still skewed by the Global Financial Crisis, which occurred almost 10 years ago.

Monthly returns over financial year to date to 31 May 2017

So, in a year that has seen interest rates cut and held low, superannuation changes that have affected many older Australians and indexation that saw around 330,000 Australians lose pension entitlements, it’s nice to see some positive returns for retirees.

How does your super fund rate?



    To make a comment, please register or login
    23rd Jun 2017
    I am with Australian Super and being a Industry Fund the service and fees are great.Their ratings are all ways near the top, this is in spite of the Federal Government interference with super rules.
    23rd Jun 2017
    I fully agree with you, floss. I changed to them from State Plus (formerly State Super Financial Services) and should have done that several years ago as State Plus produced shockingly low returns year after year. It is a good example of how one can suffer from "inertia". We need to go check other super funds when we are dissatisfied with what we are with. My Australian Super funds are growing faster than the regular S paid into my bank account unlike the State Plus. My recommendation to anyone with State Plus or any other fund and if you are dissatisfied with your returns is to go look at other funds.
    Waiting to retire at 70
    23rd Jun 2017
    Little confused here. Can you help?

    1. Are you referring to the net returns here (i.e., returns minus costs from funds manager/superannuation fund and tax) or the gross return (without subtracting the costs of management and tax)?
    If the latter, then I think your table could be considered misleading as the management costs can, and do, vary greatly. I think what generally people would read from your table is their superannuation increased by the % you report, when in fact it would be somewhat less when the management/admin costs and tax on earnings were subtracted. Can you tell me what is reported here? Is it the equivalent of EBITDA or net of all costs?

    2. Are you referring to returns on accumulation stage funds and/or returns on pension stage funds?
    The costs associated with these two types of accounts vary greatly. For instance, First State Super charges vary a little but essentially they take 0.15% of your investment as an annual management fee plus an annual management fee. Whilst they take almost 3 times as much as their annual management fee of a pension account (namely 0.40%) + a small annual management fee. But then pension accounts returns aren't taxed at 15% as accumulation accounts are. I have been told a pension fund costs more to manage as they "have to distribute payments, weekly, monthly, half yearly or annually, and this costs". That is reasonable but such a process should NOT be a % of the investment. Shouldn't it be a set fee added to the annual Admin fee?

    Again, I appreciate you supplying such tables but do need a little more than just the table to understand what it is ACTUALLY reporting.

    23rd Jun 2017
    The funds shown appear to be unlike. All funds have different strategy levels from secure to growth with most having a mix to suit the individual circumstances. The table seems to be comparing some growth with some balanced which will obviously have a different mix of products. Again, I am disappointed with the lack of research on this site. We surely deserve more than "cut and paste".
    23rd Jun 2017
    I think LifeChoices do a great job and are more than willing to assist my me when asked.
    Not a Bludger
    23rd Jun 2017
    31MAY17 may be a bit to early to be calling the shots forFY 2017, given the past few days on the stock exchange - but there you go with the amateurs.
    23rd Jun 2017
    I was thinking the same thing Not a Bludger. There is still a week to go until 30 June and a LOT can happen in that time.
    23rd Jun 2017
    Perhaps a reread of the above post may be in order for some.
    23rd Jun 2017
    Either you work for YLC or you have applied for a job there. Rereading the article doesn't change my opinion. It's not comparing like with like and that is my point.
    24th Jun 2017
    What a strange comment old man.
    Chris B T
    25th Jun 2017
    The Yearly and Total amount in your super is A Precceived Total.
    Not like a Bank Balance which is Actual Amount.
    Your amount in super is at risk of negative earnings so what the amount is today or until withdrawal can change well below what it is now.
    So to lose $100k from Super and then told you can make it up over coming years is a joke besides almost beyound comprehension as compounding interest only works in the positive.
    That is the name of the game with Super Componding Interest. Not Negative Earnings.

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