Wealth giant pays out $200m in early release claims

The major institution has confirmed it has received more than 28,500 requests for early release of superannuation, totalling around $200 million, while its service team has experienced as much as a 250 per cent rise in call volume.

The wealth giant issued an update for its third quarter (the three months leading up to March), where it revealed it had increased its funds under management, advice and administration (FUMA) from the December quarter by 34.2 per cent or $49.8 million, to $195.6 million. 

The group copped $704 million in total net outflows during the period, but the recent $825 million acquisition of the ANZ Pensions & Investments (P&I) business had added $77.1 billion in funds to its total.

Excluding P&I, net outflows were $63 million or 0.04 per cent of the group’s opening FUMA.

Market values of assets had been slugged by the pandemic, resulting in a $26 billion or 11.7 per cent fall in total asset values. 

As at 27 April, the group (including P&I) had received more than 28,500 requests for early super. The majority of the claims came through the P&I business, which received 22,500 requests totalling $152 million. 

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Without P&I, IOOF saw more than 6,100 requests, totalling $49 million of the total $200 million. The group stated it had developed automated payments for the scheme, with 82 per cent of payments being made within one business day and the vast majority (99 per cent) being processed within three business days. 

In contrast, around 50 per cent of all requests by P&I were reported to have been completed. 

Chief executive Renato Mota noted the IOOF and P&I suite of funds are predominantly invested in liquid assets. 

“The high level of liquidity in both the IOOF and P&I suite of funds has meant that we can quickly meet member obligations from the early release of super while retaining asset allocation integrity,” Mr Mota said. 

Chairman Allan Griffiths added in his message to shareholders IOOF was well placed to support the early raid given the “diversified demographic nature” of its members and clients.

IOOF’s investment management business saw $81 million in outflows during the quarter, down from $129 million in net outflows the year before and the P&I business saw $641 million in net outflows. 

The financial advice segment had $162 million shed in net outflows, compared to $283 million in net inflows in the pcp. 

An advice practice within an ex-ANZ aligned dealer group off-boarded during the quarter, taking $202 million in funds under advice with it. Excluding the one practice, IOOF noted its net flows were marginally positive. 

Mr Mota noted since the onset of COVID-19 pandemic, the group had seen a “surge in demand for financial advice and information”.

Meanwhile the portfolio and estate administration business saw $180 million in net inflows, slipping by 2 per cent from the year before ($183 million in net inflows). 

Mr Mota stated the segment had seen significant inflows into its proprietary platforms. 

“The competitive and contemporary IOOF Essential, eXpand and Shadforth Portfolio Service platforms are proving popular with advisers resulting in further inflow momentum during the quarter,” Mr Mota said. 

“Several enhancements were released during the period, including a managed account solution.

“Despite disruption caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we continue to make process on our platform transformation (Project Evolve). It is on track for completion at the end of 2021.”

IOOF will be simplifying its platform suite down to one contemporary platform.

Wealth giant pays out $200m in early release claims
early release claims
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