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APRA proposes updates to super data transparency

The prudential regulator is planning to publish data on all super products and investment options for the first time.

A wide range of additional data from superannuation funds could soon be made public under a new proposal from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA).

In a bid to “sharply” expand its breadth, APRA has proposed to publish new aggregate industry, fund-level and product-level statistics from June, including improved data on insurance arrangements, expenses, member demographics and asset allocation classifications.

The regulator plans to do so by tweaking what will – and will not – be treated as confidential, a proposal that could see it publish most of the data it collected under phase 1 of its multi-year Superannuation Data Transformation (SDT) project.

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This includes data on all products and investment options, representing a step-up for the regulator that has to date only published product-level data for MySuper products.

“The Superannuation Data Transformation sits at the heart of APRA’s agenda to use heightened transparency to lift industry performance and improve member outcomes,” said APRA executive board member Margaret Cole.

APRA finalised the first phase of its Superannuation Data Transformation last year and set new reporting standards having identified “urgent gaps” in the data reported by super funds.

“While collecting better quality data across all products and investment options is essential for APRA’s ability to scrutinise the outcomes trustees are delivering for members, it’s only half the puzzle,” said APRA executive board member Ms Cole.

“Increasing the breadth, depth and consistency of the data we publish will help all stakeholders make better informed decisions by providing a more complete picture of the industry.”

The regulator has now begun consulting on its latest proposal, with submissions open until 15 April.

The proposal follows the launch of APRA’s inaugural performance test in August last year and its super fund heatmaps that were recently expanded to include Choice products.

“As with the MySuper and Choice heatmaps and Your Future, Your Super performance test, we also expect the increased transparency to benefit members by making it even clearer who isn’t performing and urgently needs to improve or get out,” added Ms Cole.

APRA proposes updates to super data transparency
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Jon Bragg

Jon Bragg

Jon Bragg is a journalist for Momentum Media's Investor Daily, nestegg and ifa. He enjoys writing about a wide variety of financial topics and issues and exploring the many implications they have on all aspects of life.

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