The latest Australian Taxation Office (ATO) superannuation statistics have shown the self-managed super funds (SMSFs) are now the most cost-effective retirement savings vehicles in the country.

The figures, released yesterday, revealed a fee base of 0.25 per cent applies to just over one third (38 per cent) of all SMSFs.

The data also shows SMSF fees have been experiencing a downward trend since 2008. In that year, the average fee per fund was 0.95 per cent, which then fell to 0.67 per cent in 2009, with a further fall in 2010 to 0.65 per cent.

The Self-Managed Super Funds Professionals’ Association of Australia (SPAA) said the statistics compare very well to the competing retail and industry fund sectors.

SPAA quoted comparable fees for retail funds being 2.1 per cent and 1.1 per cent for industry funds, although direct comparisons may not be an accurate measure.

“The relevant fact is the ATO figures show the SMSF sector’s administrative and investment fees have been falling for the three years to 2010 and as such it would be reasonable to expect they are even lower now,” SPAA chief executive Andrea Slattery said.

“Certainly it’s a welcome trend and proof positive that SMSFs are more than competitive with the other superannuation sectors in terms of fees,” she added.

A further development emerging from the statistics was the number of SMSF establishments executed by women between 25 and 54 years of age.

“They also are a larger percentage in those age groups than the percentage of men starting an SMSF, although men still dominate the number of SMSFs starting for those over 54 years of age,” Slattery said.

“Women starting an SMSF with an income of less than $60,000 dominate while men are larger in numbers who have incomes that are greater than $60,000.”




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