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CSIRO to research super spending habits

The spending habits of retirees are being studied by CSIRO and Monash University in a $9 million project to analyse retirement needs, investment options and financial products.

The CSIRO-Monash Superannuation Research Cluster is a $9 million research initiative bringing together researchers from CSIRO, Monash and Griffith Universities, the University of Western Australia and the University of Warwick in the UK.

Researchers are looking to understand what retirees need, how long their super lasts and what investment options and financial products might suit them throughout their retirement, CSIRO research leader Alan Dormer said.

“For example, what levels of confidence and security does superannuation provide to retirees, and how does it affect their spending behaviour throughout their retirement?” Mr Dormer asked.

“The way you spend your super in retirement makes a big difference to the type of risk you take when selecting your investment options.”

The chief executive of over-50s lobby group National Seniors, Michael O’Neill, expects the research to debunk some of the super spending myths associated with older Australians.

“We expect claims that baby boomers are spending their super on living the high life, and then falling onto the pension, will prove unfounded,” he said.


The Melbourne-based researchers will use big data analytics, social science, risk and economic modelling.

Challenger Financial Services head of government relations David Cox said Challenger valued the independence, objectivity, and real-world problem-solving focus of the Monash CSIRO research collaboration.