Australian super funds can claim to have met their objective of positive returns four out of every five years after a bumper 2012.
An average 12.7 per cent return for growth-oriented superannuation last year finally erased the misery of the global financial crisis in 2008, when more than 20 per cent was wiped off the value of retirement nest-eggs.
Figures released yesterday by superannuation research group ChantWest show that growth funds enjoyed an average one per cent annual return between the end of 2007 and the end of last year. Positive returns in 2009, 2010 and 2012, have now offset the horrors of 2008 and the 1.9 per cent slide in 2011.
ChantWest director Warren Chant said superannuation funds had achieved their risk management objective by being in the red in only two of the past 10 years and four of the past 20 years.
He said funds had easily exceeded their targets over the long-term, with the 10-year return on growth funds sitting at 6.3 per cent.
Growth funds have 61 to 80 per cent of their money in growth assets. High growth funds, which have more than 81 per cent in growth assets, enjoyed a 13.9 per cent return last year. Balanced funds, with between 41 and 60 per cent in growth assets, had a one-year return of 10.7 per cent.
Last year's return reflected the strong performance of listed shares and property.
BUMPER RETURNS 5.9% The 10-year average annual return of balanced super funds