Melbourne-based super fund AustralianSuper announced Monday that its "balanced fund" default option managed to post a 0.52% gain for the fiscal year ended June 30.
The modest rise was "a good outcome" given the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the global economy and financial markets, Mark Delaney, deputy chief executive and chief investment officer, said in a news release. The super fund oversees A$180 billion ($123.6 billion) in retirement assets for more than 2.2 million participants.
"To arrive at the end of the financial year with a positive result given the turmoil we have seen is a very good outcome for members," Mr. Delaney said. The latest results are well below the balanced option's 8.77% annualized returns over the past decade and its 7.31% annualized returns over the past 15 years.
In a separate announcement Monday, SuperRatings, a superannuation research house based in Sydney and Melbourne, predicted that a majority of super funds will fail to post a positive return for the just-ended fiscal year, despite a strong June quarter that helped many to recover from the depths of the coronavirus crisis in March.
"Super funds made a strong comeback in the June quarter, but the market remains challenging due to the degree of uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic," SuperRatings executive director Kirby Rappell said in a news release.
Based on estimates for the month of June, SuperRatings predicts the median balanced options offered by super funds will suffer a roughly 1.2% drop over the 12 months ended June 30.