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Accumulation Net Benefit model for: Compare the Pair advertising, the Compare the Pair tool and general performance claim in advertising campaigns.

Industry Super Australia has commissioned SuperRatings to undertake the research and modelling used in First Super advertisements and communications. SuperRatings is a ratings, research and consultancy company that specialises in analysing superannuation funds, their investment returns, their fees and the relative benefits they offer to their members. The Accumulation Net Benefit model, prepared by SuperRatings, calculates the variance in earnings and fees between First Super and retail super funds (also known as retail master trusts) over different time periods, with the default comparison being the 5, 7, 10 and 15 years to 30 June 2021.

Background to the Accumulation Net Benefit model

Sample Set: The sample set used in the modelling contains First Super’s balanced investment option and the retail super funds which are actively tracked by SuperRatings, including superannuation investment products that are open and those that are closed to new members but continue to hold assets.

As at 30 June 2021, the number of retail super products included in the sample set for each comparison period is:

Timeframe 3 years 5 years 7 years 10 years 15 years
Retail super products 253 228 198 123 88


Information about the Accumulation Net Benefit model

  • The model uses the ‘main Balanced option’ being the fund’s largest Balanced option where 60% to 76% of the fund’s assets are invested in growth investments. This is generally the fund’s default option. Where a fund does not have a Balanced option, the option closest to SuperRatings benchmark range of 60% to 76% growth investments is used. This is done for each product provider in the sample set.
  • The model uses return and fee data that is submitted by funds to SuperRatings, made publicly available by funds or contained within formal fund disclosures as at 30 June each year.
  • Using the starting account balance and salary, the contributions, earnings and fees are calculated using 30 June data each year to derive the closing account balance at the end of each year.
  • The closing account balance for the previous year is then used to calculate earnings and fees on the account in the following years with the process being repeated for each year of the comparison.
  • The net benefit for each product refers to the cumulative earnings less fees for the relevant comparison period.
  • The average net benefit of retail super funds is calculated by taking an average of all net benefit outcomes at the end of the comparison period for the retail products actively tracked by SuperRatings.
  • The net benefit is calculated for each product which has sufficient return and performance history information available over the entire comparison period. Where this information is not available, those products are excluded from the calculation.
  • The model assumes no additional contributions or withdrawals over the relevant comparison period.
  • The model will be updated annually with 30 June figures (available in approximately October each year).
  • Modelling was performed on 14 October 2021 using data as at 30 June 2021.


Other assumptions for the Accumulation Net Benefit model

Salary increase
3.5% per annum.

Investment Returns
Performance (Net Benefit) modelling is based on actual reported returns over the stated period.

When are investment returns credited to members’ accounts?

Superannuation Guarantee Contribution
The Superannuation Guarantee rate used for each year’s calculation is in accordance with the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act. The modelling assumes no salary sacrifice or voluntary contributions.

Contribution tax

When are contributions assumed to be made?
Quarterly in arrears (i.e. the first contribution is made 3 months after joining the fund)

When are fees assumed to be deducted?

Tax rebate
A tax rebate of 15% is assumed on fees deducted from members’ accumulation accounts

Employer asset size
Members’ accumulation accounts are assumed to be in a ’small’ employer size of $150,000 in funds under management (FUM) at the start of calculation.

2.5% per annum

All fee information is taken from the sample funds’ product disclosure statements or other formal disclosures at the end of each year in the calculation. Contribution fees, entry fees, exit fees, additional adviser fees or any other fees charged are excluded from this model.

No deductions are made for insurance premiums.

Timeframe First Super net benefit Retail super fund net benefit First Super account balance today Retail super fund account balance today Net benefit difference 
Last year $7,200 $9,372 $61,238 $63,409 -$2,171
Last 3 years $11,400 $14,336 $73,941 $76,878 -$2,937
Last 5 years $28,447 $28,143 $100,098 $99,794 $304
Last 7 years $44,598 $40,368 $126,006 $121,777 $4,229
Last 10 years $82,793 $74,349 $179,613 $171,168 $8,445
Last 15 years $126,529 $103,286 $252,647 $229,404 $23,243

As at 30 June 2021.