Politics

Dec 17, 2012

Richard Farmer’s chunky bits: uni super alarms

There's a strong suggestion that the defined benefits university superannuation scheme is extremely biased against younger contributors to the fund compared with their colleagues who are closer to retirement age.

Richard Farmer

Crikey political commentator

Alarming reports on university super. I am hearing quite alarming things about the defined benefits university superannuation scheme. What I would describe as “a normally reliable source” tells me that there’s not enough in the kitty to meet the obligations unless there is a very surprising increase in investment returns. Downward adjustments to payments look like being necessary. And there’s a strong suggestion that the scheme is extremely biased against younger contributors to the fund compared with their colleagues who are closer to retirement age.

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One thought on “Richard Farmer’s chunky bits: uni super alarms

  1. Gavin Moodie

    The shortfall in UniSuper’s defined benefits scheme has been public since ABC tv’s 7.30 Report reported it on 13 December 2011: ‘Super fund puts workers’ entitlements at risk’. Since then UniSuper and university branches of the National Tertiary Education Union have kept members well informed of developments and possible changes to get the defined benefits scheme into balance.

    UniSuper is funded at a high rate, with contributions of 14% of wages from employers and 7% from employees. It was running very big surpluses in the 1990s which it distributed to members in a bonus, which was short sighted in retrospect. No decision on getting the fund back into balance is needed for a few years, but any cut to benefits seems likely to be modest.

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