Yes folks, it's time to get specific. Superannuation funds are now coming under the Midga Microscope.
I have here in my hand one of the many updates I get periodically from the various super funds I can't be bothered closing. I've been rumbling for a while about their habit of spending my money telling me (in full colour, and I know how much that costs) how badly the fund is going. But this one takes the cake - they are sending me, I kid you not, a plastic card (like a credit card but no magstripe) with their logo and contact details, plus their BPay number for voluntary contributions. They sent me this, so they tell me, so that if I ever change employers I can transfer my super more easily. Um HELLO? Do they think I'm in the habit of changing employers as often as I use my Visa card? If I need to change employers I'll be able to find back one of the periodic brochures they send me, there's no shortage!
And along with this card, they're now telling me that they offer life insurance, disability insurance and income protection. Not only do they offer it, but they will start charging my fund $5 a WEEK for it starting from the beginning of April. Well thanks very much! What's it worth to me? I don't have any dependents who will be left with nothing if I'm accidentally knocked down by a taxi (if/when I do have dependents they'll have a BIG family to look out for them if something happens to me). And if I'm totally and permanently disabled (which for me would mean unable to move a muscle apart from my eyeballs) I won't be able to spend the money will I?
Of course the covering letter devotes several paragraphs to the benefits of making voluntary contributions to super, and the complete simplicity of transferring your super from other funds into this one. Not running short of capital are we? Of course not, this is only a financial crisis, we'll still be earning you 16% or more!
Hands up who thinks it would be simpler just to have a separate bank account which I can put money into whenever I want, work as long as I want and retire when I feel like it.