SMSFs Using Retail Managed Funds Report 2013

For Release: December 2013

SMSFs Using Retail Managed Funds Report 2013

  • Overview: The report and underlying data provide an in-depth analysis of the leading Retail providers, covering growth in Funds since 2003, as well as Inflows and Outflows. Competition between leading companies including AMP, BT, Commonwealth, MLC and Macquarie, continues to drive this market. Other companies who have played a role in the provision of administrative and investment services include OnePath, Mercer and netWealth. The move to aggressively target some of the older Administration Service Providers remains one of the key strategies for entering and developing this key sector, offering substantial opportunities for existing and new players.

  • Opportunities Analysis: Analysis of opportunities for Retirement and Income Stream (Annuities and Pensions), Insurance, Investment and Administration.

  • Member Demographics: By FUM (Age ranges) identifying amounts of pre- and post- retirement money.

  • Product Analysis: Review of distribution approach for each company and detailed review of the types of service, fees, charges and investments offered.

  • Administration Service Providers: Details of the most prominent service providers who’ve built up much of the SMSF under administration.

  • Spreadsheet Data Granularity: Company Overview (up to 10 years history), Annual Market Overview (up to 9 years history), Investment Categories and Investments.

  • Spreadsheet Data Metrics: fund size, investment types, sales, inflows (including contributions), outflows (benefits, tax, admin/investment expenses), net flows, investment income, net transfers, other movements.

  • Updates:  In addition to the initial Report and spreadsheet data, subscribers will receive a series of quarterly data updates during 2014.


Future of Financial Advice

Updated: 4 October 2013

Plan For Life response to the Future of Financial Advice reforms

Well before the emergence of the Future of Financial Advice reforms (FOFA), Plan for Life has always been of the firm view that any selection process, whether choosing a Life Company, Fund Manager or a Financial Product, should be based on having available as much objective and factual information as possible at the time of making the choice.  Whenever Plan for Life has interfaced with dealer groups, the primary focus has been to provide research that is objective, fact-based and independent. Looking to the future, we believe that this concept of fact-based research as an input to selection provides a major cornerstone to product selection.

Legislation driving the need for ‘reasonable investigation’

Future of Financial Advice reforms (FOFA), raises the need for Australian financial services (AFS) licencees (Dealer groups) to comply with legislative fiduciary duty requiring them to place clients’ interest ahead of their own (‘best interests’ duty).

To rely on the safe harbour for the ‘best interests’ duty, an advice provider must conduct a ‘reasonable investigation’ into the financial products that might meet the needs of a client and ‘assess the information gathered in the investigation’.

How to demonstrate that a ‘reasonable investigation’ has been conducted:

  • Use research reports by external research report providers to identify products
  • Benchmark the product against the market for similar products to establish competitiveness
  • Investigate or consider a product not on their approved product list

Plan For Life offers independent research solutions

Plan For Life publishes independent and objective research and reports covering Managed Funds and Life/Risk Insurance markets for use by dealer groups.

Life/Risk Insurance Research

  1. Risk Benchmarking Report for Dealers provides an input for creating and maintaining approved product lists for Risk Insurance. It is an objective basis for comparing individual risk products in the Australian market (Term Life & TPD, Trauma and Income Protection) and Life Companies.  Risk Benchmarking uses a set of criteria (Financial Strength, Product Features, Life Company Customer Service, Premium Rates and Market Performance) with each criteria custom weighted by the Dealer Group.
  2. Market intelligence gathering covering the Life Insurance market for news, events, product updates, premium comparisons is accessible via the new PFL Research website
  3. Risk Product Comparator is a database and reporting tool for detailed analysis and comparison of Life Insurance products. Premiums for Term, TPD, Trauma and Income Protection for all the Companies are represented in tabular format and graphically. Features of each product are compared and each definition is allocated a score based on the PFL Risk Benchmarking methodology.
  4. Statistics and Market Share covers Quarterly Inflow and In-Force Statistics, Lapse/Terminations report, Direct Insurance report, Forecast report, Distribution Channels reports.

Managed Funds Research

  1. Quarterly market share reports cover reporting of results for Retail and Wholesale superannuation and investment markets with commentary. Data includes FUM, Inflows, Outflows, Transfers and Investment Performance.
  2. Market intelligence gathering covering the Managed Funds market for news, events, and product updates is accessible via the new PFL Research website
  3. Tracking individual investment funds using an online database to produce flexible reports and charts
  4. Other Research Available: Forecast report, Superannuation datasets (industry funds, public sector, corporate, platforms), Distribution Channels reports, Annuities Benchmarking, Investment Bond Benchmarking.


Direct Insurance Report 2013: Identifying Real Differentiation

Released: July 2013

Direct Insurance Report 2013 is an independent investigation into the Australian Direct Insurance Market exploring the key underlying aspects of this growing sector. Plan For Life will be issuing regular updates to this initial report during the year, in order to ensure that new products, updates and product features continue to be reported; as well as revised Market Share data and updated Product Benchmarking. In short, the Report and its accompanying data sets have been designed to enable you to keep in touch with this rapidly changing market.

Companies covered: AAMI, Allianz, AMP, ANZ, APIA, Aussie Life, Australian Seniors Ins, BT Insurance, Budget Direct, Bupa, Clearview, Freedom Insurance, GIO, Guardian, HCF, InsuranceLine, Macquarie Life, Medibank, Metlife, Million Dollar Woman, MLC, OnePath, Real Insurance, St Andrews, St George, Suncorp, Sureplan, Westpac, Woolworths, Zurich.

Direct Products Covered: The full range of Direct Insurance types offered includes Term Life, Trauma, Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD), Trauma/Critical Illness, Accidental Death, Funeral Cover and Income Protection, but excluding Mortgage/Credit Card Insurance at this stage.

The Report covers a wide range of issues, examining the key facets of the Direct Insurance Market:

  • Market Share Statistics – In Force, New Business, State, Age and Smoker/Non Smoker segmentation

  • Direct Risk Lapses and Persistency – covering sales and lapses for the 4 years 2008 to 2012.

  • Forecast of the Direct Risk Market from the start of 2013 through to the end of 2018 has been developed, covered sales and in-force for lump sum and income protection policies by company.

  • Premium Comparison Analysis - indicative Premium Rates for only those Insurers with on-line quoting capability, phone calls to Insurers and, in some instances via Product Disclosure statements. Also included is comparison of Direct Insurance rates versus Retail rates.

  • Benchmarking of Policy Terms and Conditions – analysed in fine detail, including a first-ever benchmarking of each product feature as well as an overall Benchmark per Insurer.

  • Analysis of Underwriting (on-line processes), Application (the different approaches used) and Marketing Approach (positioning and target markets).

Report Package

  • Written Report (PDF) and detailed spreadsheet tables.

  • Ongoing Updates to Product Database and Benchmarking Reports – analysis, feedback and fresh ratings over the next 12 months.

  • Updated Market Share Statistics 6 monthly – Sales, In Force, Lapse/Retention and new data as we source it.

  • Personal company presentation conducted by the Plan For Life team to discuss the findings.


ETF Data - verified and accurate

Released: December 2012

Australian ETF Data now available from Plan For Life has been collected directly and signed-off by ETF providers to ensure accuracy of reporting. Despite falls over 2011, Funds Under Management has grown steadily over the past several years to $5,791m (Sep-12), with over 82 products in this market.

  • Key Features: Accurate and signed-off data set, Total market coverage, Consolidated history with the ability to analyse market share trends by both provider and product.

  • Data Granularity (9 years quarterly history): Company Overview, Investment Categories, Product Detail

  • Data Metrics (9 years quarterly history): fund size, unit prices, 1 Year Return %, Cash Dividend Yield %, Number of Units on Issue.  

  • Other Data Fields: Listing Date, Termination Date, MER %, ASX Code, Benchmark Index, Responsible Entity, Investment Manager, Distribution Frequency.

  • Format: Spreadsheet

  • Updated: Quarterly


SMSFs Using Retail Managed Funds Report 2012

Released: December 2012


Retail Managed Funds have traditionally been a small part of the SMSF investment mix. However, new research from Plan For Life shows that there has been strong growth in SMSFs using Retail Managed Funds over last 3 years. SMSFs Using Retail Managed Funds Report 2012 looks at which companies are currently capturing this market and forecasts the growth potential.


Direct Life Insurance in Australia: Racing onto the Radar

Released: July 2012

Australia has one of the highest levels of penetration globally in the direct sale of Life insurance, insurance sold without the purchaser having a face-to-face meeting with a financial advisor. It has historically been dominated by a small number of firms selling a focused range of products to a well-defined demographic group, relying on a narrow range of marketing and sales channels. While growth has been impressive, the current Direct insurance channel has developed under the radar screen of many large insurance groups and to date has only reached a fraction of its potential.

  • Report Overview: An investigation into the Direct market today and historical influences, Direct Business Models and the Competitive Landscape, Future Growth Drivers, Winning Strategies, Conclusions and detailed Appendices with examples and unique industry sales statistics.

  • Updates: Additional update with detailed sales statistics will also be provided 6 months after report release.

  • Presentation: A full presentation covering key report features is offered as part of the report purchase. You can ask questions and provide feedback to the report authors.


Simfund Dash Australia

Released: March 2012

  • Simfund Dash Australia is an online interactive reporting and analysis tool designed to support the financial industry in its product, marketing, distribution, benchmarking and research efforts covering Australian superannuation and investment markets with data provided by Plan For Life.

  • Simfund Dash is a web-based database that generates professional, presentation-ready fund industry analysis and reports in seconds.

  • Simfund Dash allows you to select the Chart first, and then customize the underlying data to filter according to your requirements.

  • Reports can be saved and shared between users within the framework of Simfund Dash.

  • Multiple reports can be placed into a print-ready Workbook, exportable to pdf, excel, word, and additional formats.

  • Simfund Dash includes automatic upgrades and allows fast access to the latest data.

  • Simfund Dash is supported by a dedicated team of in-house information technology specialists.

  • Simfund Dash requires no software installation and can be accessed anywhere via the Internet.