The must-read section of SuperGuide. These popular and compelling columns generate debate about issues affecting Australians planning for retirement, or living in retirement.

Each month, we draw attention to an area of our superannuation system that needs improvement or deserves recognition. Trish Power's views in the columns are informed, and independent.

Below are some of our key THE SOAPBOX articles:

Set out below are all SuperGuide articles explaining THE SOAPBOX.

How to spot an independent financial adviser

Note: SuperGuide originally published this article about five years ago, but the topic remains highly relevant for readers today. We have updated the original article with information on the legal definition of ‘independence’ and the IFAAA’s version of independence.Every week I receive emails … [Read more...]

How many financial advisers operate in Australia?

Q: I’m looking for information on an approximate breakdown of how many Australian financial advisers are part of a dealer group, and how many are operating by themselves as individual businesses. I’ve asked ASIC, FAA and the FPA and I can’t get an answer. Looking through the older ABS stats it also … [Read more...]

Still wanted: all independent advisers in Australia

More than six years ago, SuperGuide embarked on a long and arduous mission. We decided that we wanted to find every independent financial adviser in Australia, and to give these advisers an opportunity to let SuperGuide readers know that they exist.For the past 6 years, we have published a list … [Read more...]

Super rules and tax: Defending decent SMSF trustees

Based on the bagging that self-managed super fund trustees have received in the media recently from certain sectors of the superannuation industry, and from other vested interest groups, you may be thinking that taking control of your retirement savings via a self-managed super fund (SMSF) is akin … [Read more...]

SMSF compliance: Is your fund due for a super service?

Read this article to discover the rules in place for SMSF trustees, and discover what you can do to ensure your SMSF operates within the super laws.A lot has changed for SMSF trustees in the past few years. The most recent significant change was the introduction of financial penalties, which are … [Read more...]

SMSF trustees unfairly targeted by super tax illiterates

Some leaders in the superannuation sector and in some economic think tanks are ignorant about SMSFs, including how the super tax rules work generally. Yet we have numerous pronouncements by various individuals and organisations about SMSFs not paying tax, or SMSF trustees not having the skills to … [Read more...]

Super rumour: Government to ban anti-detriment payments?

Recently, financial publications have been reporting on the use of anti-detriment payments, and the possibility that the federal government plans to ban such payments. This speculation continues even though at the time of writing, we do not have an official government response to the 2015 Tax … [Read more...]

SMSF expertise: Debunking the DIY super myth

The practice of calling self-managed super funds, ‘DIY super funds’ upsets the regulator, and also concerns many of the service providers making a living from helping individuals set up, and run, self-managed super funds (SMSFs).The key message emanating from the SMSF industry is that you can’t … [Read more...]

Liberals response to Financial System Inquiry: Super and retirement summary

On 20 October 2015, the new Liberal leadership of the current Liberal government published their response to the Financial System Inquiry (FSI). For readers, it is safe to treat this response as a political document, drawing a line in the sand for the next federal election, due some time in … [Read more...]

Government confirms green light on SMSF borrowing

On 20 October 2015, the Liberal government confirmed that SMSF borrowing, through the use of limited recourse borrowing arrangements, continues to remain a legitimate financing option for SMSFs. The government’s position was announced as part of its response to the Financial System Inquiry (FSI) … [Read more...]