Growth, market volatility and inflation key themes this quarter
Markets performed well overall in 2021, despite the challenges and disruptions brought on by the pandemic. This resulted in positive performance from your super for the 12 months to 31 December 2021. In the first quarter of 2022, however, returns from share and bond markets were negatively affected by a combination of factors. These included the ongoing war in Ukraine which created additional volatility, rising inflation (including a sharp rise in the price of fuel), and the impact of supply chain disruptions on businesses.
Looking forward, we believe that markets will continue to be volatile, and that returns will be challenged as interest rates continue to rise. The US central bank has signalled that interest rates in the world’s largest economy might rise more quickly than initially anticipated, and this has also dampened investors’ expectations.
Against this backdrop, it’s important to remember that super is a long-term investment and that when we invest your super, we do so with the aim of maximising your long-term savings. This means taking short-term risks into account, while implementing a longer-term, risk-adjusted strategy with the aim of delivering strong long-term performance and helping you retire with more.
Strong long-term performance – helping you retire with more
Our High Growth, Growth and Balanced Growth options, which are part of our MySuper Lifecycle approach, and where over 80% of our accumulation members are invested, continue to deliver strong long-term performance.
Our High Growth option, where MySuper members up to the age of 56 and members who have chosen our High Growth option are invested, returned 9.9% over the year and 10.0% p.a. over the 5 years to 31 March 2022.
Our Growth and Balanced Growth options also delivered strong positive returns for the year to 31 March 2022. Our Growth option returned 7.6% over the year and 8.3% p.a. over the 5 years to 31 March 2022, and our Balanced Growth option returned 5.5% over the year and 6.3% p.a. over the 5 years to 31 December 2022.
Our Growth and Balanced Growth options ranked in the top 10 over 5, 7 and 10 years to 31 March 2022.1
You can feel confident that your super savings are working hard for you, helping you retire with more.
1Source: Super Ratings Fund Crediting Rate Survey 31 March 2021 (Default Options Index - approximately 220 options). Aware Super Accumulation High Growth option delivered an annualised return over ten years to 31 March 2022 of 10.6% p.a. compared to the index median of 8.4% p.a. for the same period. Returns are net of investment fees, tax and implicit asset-based administration fees. Investment returns are not guaranteed. Past performance is not an indicator of future performance.
Our retirement strategies also delivered strong long-term performance
Our diversified investment options in the Retirement Income Stream delivered positive returns for the 12 months to 31 March 2022.
For our members nearing or in retirement, we tailor the options typically used at this stage of life to help safeguard your super savings by cushioning the impact of short-term market falls, while still allowing for some growth when markets rise.
Members in our Retirement Income Stream Balanced Growth option enjoyed returns of 6.2% for the 12 months to 31 March 2022.
And importantly, over the long term our Retirement Income Stream Balanced Growth option has continued to deliver top-10 performance over 3,5 and 10 years.2
Source: SuperRatings Fund Crediting Rate Survey 31 March 2022. SR50 Balanced (60-76) Index – approximately 50 funds – Aware Super Accumulation Growth investment option ranked in the top 10 for 5,7 and 10 year periods. SR25 Conservative Balanced (41-59) Index – approximately 25 funds – Aware Super Balanced Growth investment option ranked in the top 10 for 5,7 and 10 year periods. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. ↩
Source: SuperRatings Pension Fund Crediting Rate Survey, 31 March 2022. SRP25 Conservative Balanced (41-59) Index. Aware Super Retirement Income Stream Balanced Growth option ranked in the top 10 for 3,5 and 10 years. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. ↩