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Funds battle over shape of MySuper

A ROW is brewing over key details in the Gillard government's plan to shake up superannuation, as wealth managers lobby Canberra for concessions.

A ROW is brewing over key details in the Gillard government's plan to shake up superannuation, as wealth managers lobby Canberra for concessions.

In the biggest overhaul of compulsory super since its introduction in 1992, the government is preparing to make changes it says will cut waste in the $1.3 trillion industry.

However, industry consultation has hit a snag over the rules surrounding MySuper - a new low-cost, no-frills super product to replace default funds in 2013.

Talks between super funds and the government, which are in their final stages, have failed to reach an agreement on whether funds will be required to offer only one MySuper product at a single price, a proposal opposed by retail funds.

The stand-off is likely to leave the Assistant Treasurer, Bill Shorten, to make several key decisions on the shape of MySuper in coming months. The main bone of contention is a proposal from Treasury that funds may offer only one MySuper account at a single price, irrespective of the size of the employer.

For-profit retail funds fiercely oppose the idea, saying it would hurt competition and could raise member fees in funds of large employers. The not-for-profit sector supports Treasury's proposal, saying any cost-savings of scale should be shared equally among all fund members.

The peak industry consultation group, chaired by a former Future Fund general manager, Paul Costello, has failed to reach agreement on the question of pricing and has called a final meeting for Monday in an attempt to reach a compromise.

However, industry sources said the meeting was unlikely to resolve the dispute, and Mr Costello would probably have to advise Mr Shorten that funds were divided on the issue when he reports back to the minister later this month.

MySuper is due to be introduced on July 1, 2013.


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