AustralianSuper reports 15.6% fiscal year surge for balanced option

AustralianSuper, Australia's largest industry superannuation fund with roughly A$62 billion (US$56.3 billion) in assets, said its balanced investment option delivered a 15.6% gain for the fiscal year ended June 30.

An AustralianSuper news release said strong equity markets at home and abroad powered the latest returns for the balanced option — the choice of “most” of the superannuation fund's more than 2 million members.

Susan Fairley, a Sydney-based spokeswoman for AustralianSuper, said roughly A$46 billion of the fund's A$62 billion total is invested in the option.

The news release noted that for the 12 months through June 30, Australian stocks surged 21.9%, with other major markets enjoying strong gains as well — including U.S. stocks, up 20.6%, and Japanese stocks, up 51.9%.

The Australian dollar's decline against most other major currencies during the year, meanwhile, delivered an additional 11.8% gain on the superannuation fund's overseas assets.

The fund's unlisted holdings in real estate and infrastructure continued to deliver steady returns, according to the release.

Ms. Fairley said June 30 asset allocation figures weren't immediately available.

The latest annual advance was AustralianSuper's fourth in a row coming out of the global financial crisis, following a 1% gain for the fiscal year through June 2012, and returns of just more than 10% for the two prior fiscal years.

For the fiscal year through June 2009, AustralianSuper's balanced fund lost 13.3%.

With the latest gain, the balanced fund has enjoyed an average return of 7.64% for the 10 years through June 30.