Performance and Returns
As at 28 February 2023
Renewables Plus Growth
Balanced Growth Pension
Relative to launch date
Returns provided are after investment fees, percentage-based administration fees and taxes but before dollar-based administration fees have been taken out. Returns for periods of greater than one year are on a per annum compound basis. Return of capital and the performance of your investment in the Fund are not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.
Can I just switch all my super to cash while markets are volatile?
Future Super doesn’t have a cash option, but many other funds do. During the market volatility around the start of the pandemic some people did choose to switch to cash. Unfortunately, research found that members in the averaged super balanced option who switched to cash in April 2020 would have lost up to 27% by July 2021.
We do allocate a portion of the portfolio to cash, and in certain situations the investment team could choose to allocate more to cash if it deems that as the most appropriate action.
If you’re considering options for your super at this time, we recommend you seek personal financial advice before making a decision.
Has Future Super changed its investment strategy given the negative returns?
Future Super continually monitors its investment strategy taking into account changes in investment markets. No strategic changes have been made as a result of these recent negative returns and higher volatility in share markets because we believe our investment strategy will deliver the investment return objective to our members over the long term.
We continue to believe it is possible to invest in a way that has a positive impact on the world, and with ethics in mind, while also providing for our members’ retirements.
If it's normal for performance to go up and down, why haven't I seen my super fund's performance go down before?
This is Future Super’s first year of negative returns since we launched eight years ago.*
Even if you haven’t been with Future Super for a long period of time, whether you’ve seen your super returns go down before probably depends on how long you’ve been working for and how often you’ve looked at your balance.
The Australian and US share markets enjoyed a very buoyant period, where it was pretty rare for markets to be down by much,** from 2009 until the pandemic in 2020. It’s actually historically rare for markets to be so consistently up, and some experts consider that period the “longest bull market in history”. Between Australian shares and US shares, that’s a decent chunk of most super funds’ balanced options.*** That could be why you haven’t noticed a dip in returns before. But again, it’s so important to keep that long term perspective in mind.
* Calculated by returns at the end of each financial year for each Future Super investment option since inception. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.
** https://www.smh.com.au/business/markets/the-longest-bull-market-in-history-ends-in-a-savage-sell-off-20200312-p549c0.html https://money.usnews.com/investing/term/bull-market
***_ As per ASFA and APRA statistics. In the ASFA and APRA sources, MySuper options are considered balanced._
Is there any good news?
We’re keeping your money away from fossil fuel companies that are contributing to catastrophic climate change. By being a Future Super member, you are part of the divestment movement - a movement of investors using money for good and investing in a way that seeks to reduce climate change and inequality.
We invest in all different types of assets with superior environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations. To give you an example, we have invested in the IIG Solar Asset Fund, a renewable energy investment that owns three large-scale solar farms - Swan Hill, Chinchilla and Brigalow. Those solar assets are an example of investing in assets that aim to contribute to our overall performance while at the same time building clean energy solutions.*
When markets go down it can be a buying opportunity. And so, whilst it might be scary to see a graph go down, another way of thinking about this is it can be an opportunity to benefit from buying assets when they’re cheaper.
* Future Super has exposure to these assets through its investment in the IIG Solar Impact Fund. Members invested in the Future Super Balanced Impact and Future Super Renewables Plus Growth options have exposure to the IIG Solar Impact Fund. Members in the Future Super Balanced Index option do not have any exposure to this investment.
Information provided is of a general nature only and we have not taken your personal financial objectives, situation or needs into account. You should consider whether Future Super’s products are right for your individual objectives and needs and seek personal financial advice. Before making a decision to acquire, hold or continue to hold an interest in Future Super, please read the PDS and check our Target Market Determination (TMD) available at https://www.futuresuper.com.au/documents-and-forms/. Future Super does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may result from reliance on, or the use of, any information contained on this site. The contents of this website are exclusively owned by Future Super. You must not use or disclose them for any other reason than for the purposes for which they were supplied.
What does Future Super invest in?
When we launched in 2014, Future Super was the first super fund to not invest in fossil fuel companies and remains the only super fund to screen out diversified fossil fuel companies and companies providing significant services and financing to the fossil fuel industry.
At Future Super we use a three-step process to ensure your money is invested in companies that can both grow your super savings and build a better world. You can see our full screening strategy here.
First, out with the bad: our negative screen rules out harmful and destructive industries like fossil fuels, detention centres, live animal export, nuclear, tobacco and more.
Second, in with the good: our positive screen ensures we actively seek out companies that are doing social and environmental good, such as renewable energy, healthcare, education and IT. You can view a full list of the companies we invest in here.
Finally, our team look for positive industries like solar farms and other impact investments to add to the portfolio. Our renewable energy portfolio includes the Bald Hills Wind Farm in Victoria and the Lake Bonney battery in South Australia.
What investment options does Future Super have?
Future Super has three investment options: Balanced Index, Balanced Impact and Renewables Plus Growth. You can find a handy snapshot of our investment options on our website here.
All the details you need to make an informed decision about our products can be found in our Product Disclosure Statement, Target Market Determination, Additional Information Booklet, Insurance Guide and Financial Services Guide.
If you’re unsure about whether one of these options is suitable for you, you should seek financial advice to ensure you are making an informed choice based on your own financial objectives, situation and needs.
Why are returns down this year?
While super is a long-term investment and it’s important not to get too caught up in short term returns, it’s natural to be concerned about seeing negative returns - especially if you haven’t noticed this happening before.
Share markets have been volatile in 2022 and as a fund that excludes fossil fuels Future Super has faced some additional headwinds. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine sparked fossil fuel supply restrictions which have in turn caused fossil fuel stocks to do well. Since Future Super doesn’t invest in fossil fuels, we haven’t benefited from those companies’ performance.
Periods where markets are volatile are normal, and they are something Future Super plans for. You’ll see information in the Product Disclosure Statement, which outlines the goals and expectations of each investment option. The risk tolerance for Future Super products estimates at least 6 negative annual returns over any 20-year period. Those periods of negative performance are factored into our investment strategy for your super.
To give you some context about how Future Super has performed historically, our Balanced Impact option returned 5.11% since inception in 2014, Renewables Plus Growth delivered 4.06% since inception in 2018 and Balanced Index delivered 3.99% since inception in 2018.*
* Returns provided are after investment fees, percentage-based administration fees and taxes but before dollar-based administration fees have been taken out. Returns for periods of greater than one year are on a per annum compound basis. Return of capital and the performance of your investment in the Fund are not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.