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More to retirement adequacy than super: Roy Morgan

While superannuation is the area of focus in discussions around retirement adequacy, research from Roy Morgan confirms that super accounts for just over half of average gross wealth for working Australians between the ages of 50 and 64.

The research house found that for individuals within this pre-retirement age bracket, superannuation accounted for only 54 per cent of average gross wealth for men, and 53 per cent for women.

Additionally, men within this age group will retire with an average of $102,000 of debt, and women with $86,000 of debt, which “would obviously undermine their retirement funding abilities”, the firm said.

Roy Morgan industry communications director Norman Morris said, “The main public focus on the adequacy of retirement funding is generally on superannuation but for both sexes in the pre-retirement group, this accounts for only around half of average gross wealth: 54 per cent for men and 53 per cent for women.”

Mr Morris also said that the number of working Australians in the pre-retirement age group was close to three million, and this will put pressure on the government to cope with funding.

“With an average age of 57 in the pre-retirement group there is limited working life remaining for many in which to make up for any shortfall. This segment is likely to be more engaged regarding superannuation than most," he said.

“Their proximity to retirement means that they will be paying close attention to any superannuation changes and particularly the current high-profile uncertainty that will possibly reduce confidence in the system."


The research also found that the gap in superannuation savings between men and women in this age group has decreased in the past eight years, with the average woman retiring with 63 per cent of the average man's savings, compared with 2008’s average of 57.7 per cent.