Top super funds announced, reporting strongest returns in 24 years

Jul 22, 2021
The top-performing growth super fund returned 22% for the year, while the bottom-performing fund returned 13%. Source Getty

Despite last financial year’s recession and plummeting sharemarkets, the top super funds have been announced and reported encouraging returns of up to 22.6 per cent. For the 2021 financial year, the median growth super fund returned a stunning 18 per cent, the strongest financial year result in 24 years.

The top performing super funds for 2020-21 were released by Chant West, a leading research and analytics provider, which revealed of the top 10, eight funds finished 2020-21 with returns in excess of 20 per cent. The results are the second highest return since the introduction of compulsory superannuation in 1992 – the only higher financial year result was 19.4 per cent recorded in 1996/97.

The ‘growth fund’ category is where the majority of Australians have their superannuation invested and are often the default option you’re placed with when joining a new fund unless you’ve actively chosen to switch to a high growth option. The top performer for the year with a return of 22.6 per cent was Mine Super Growth, while even the worst performer in the category returned a respectable 13 per cent. Comparison website Finder reminded consumers that “13 per cent in any standard year is an exceptional result”.

Mano Mohankumar, Chant West senior investment research manager said the results would have been “inconceivable” last year and were a reward for consumers who remained stable during the financial turmoil of 2020.

“An 18 per cent return would have been inconceivable a year ago and represents a welcome reward for fund members who held their nerve and remained patient through the depths of the COVID-induced market crisis,” he said. “The experience over the past two years highlights the resilience and robustness of super funds’ portfolios.”

The best performing funds for the last 12 months and returns to 30 June 2021 were;

  • Mine Super Growth with 22.6 per cent
  • CFS FirstChoice Growth with 21.7 per cent
  • VISSF Balanced with 21.6 per cent
  • Hostplus Balanced with 21.3 per cent
  • MLC Horizon 4 with 20.8 per cent
  • Sunsuper Balanced with 20.7 per cent
  • AustralianSuper Balanced with 20.5 per cent
  • REI Super Balanced with 20.0 per cent
  • TelstraSuper Balanced with 19.9 per cent
  • BT Active Balanced with 19.7 per cent

While the results are incredibly encouraging, we all know superannuation is a long-term game and so Chant West also released the best-performing funds over the past decade in order to make sure you’re choosing a fund with consistently high returns.

“Super funds have had a tremendous year with a median return of 18 per cent but returns at that level shouldn’t be thought of as normal. The typical long-term return objective for growth funds is to beat inflation by 3.5 per cent p.a., which translates to about 5.5 per cent to 6 per cent p.a.,” said Mohankumar.

“We now have data going back 29 years to July 1992, the start of compulsory super. Over that period, the annualised return is 8.2 per cent and the annual CPI increase is 2.4 per cent, giving a real return of 5.8 per cent p.a. – well above that 3.5 per cent target.”

The researcher says the top 10 performing funds over a 10-year return (average p.a. to June 2021) were;

  • AustralianSuper Balanced with 9.7 per cent
  • Hostplus Balanced with 9.7 per cent
  • Cbus MySuper with 9.6 per cent
  • UniSuper Balanced with 9.5 per cent
  • CareSuper Balanced with 9.1 per cent
  • Sunsuper Balanced with 9.1 per cent
  • VicSuper MySuper with 9.0 per cent
  • Australian Ethical Super Balanced with 9.0 per cent
  • Vision Super Balanced Growth with 9.0 per cent
  • Aware Super Growth with 9.0 per cent

IMPORTANT LEGAL INFO This article is of a general nature and FYI only, because it doesn’t take into account your financial or legal situation, objectives or needs. That means it’s not financial product or legal advice and shouldn’t be relied upon as if it is. Before making a financial or legal decision, you should work out if the info is appropriate for your situation and get independent, licensed financial services or legal advice.

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