THE SOAPBOX

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.

Pension earnings remain tax-free after death

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Regulations took effect from 1 July 2012 (although registered in June 2013) confirming that pension earnings remain tax exempt upon the death of a fund member receiving a super pension, even when there is no reversionary pension (that is, the pension of the deceased fund member does not … [Read more...]

Women and super: A worry-free financial future in 6 steps

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Before I wrote Super Freedom, I had often discussed the need for a practical non-technical book for women on superannuation. The first question I was asked when I told some female friends that I was writing a book for women on superannuation and retirement was: ‘Why does there need to be a book on … [Read more...]

Financial advice: Only 47 independent financial advisers in Australia

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Note: This article is updated regularly when new financial advisers join the independence club (latest update January 2015). A financial adviser does not have to be a member of the IFAAA to join the SuperGuide list, provided they can declare that they satisfy the requirements of being an independent … [Read more...]

SMSF trustees unfairly targeted by super tax illiterates

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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...]

Guest contributor: Taxing pension earnings, and benefits, will deliver minimal tax revenue

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Note: the Financial System Inquiry final report suggests that super pension fund earnings should be taxed, rather than continue to receive tax-exempt status. Why? So it will reduce costs for super funds, but it most certainly will increase costs for fund members, and significantly reduce retirement … [Read more...]

Guest contributor: Franked dividends are not a tax concession

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Note: Although not referenced with reviewing the tax treatment of investments, the Financial System Inquiry final report states that it does not see a strong case for retaining dividend imputation for Australian shares. In plain English, the FSI holds the view that Australian share dividends should … [Read more...]

FSI recommends ban on SMSF borrowing

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In its final report publicly released on 7 December 2014, the Financial System Inquiry (FSI) recommends the removal the borrowing exception that permits ‘direct borrowing’ using limited recourse borrowing arrangements, but only for any future transactions. The FSI uses the term ‘direct borrowing’ … [Read more...]

Financial System Inquiry: Super and retirement summary

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On 7 December 2014, the federal government released the Financial System Inquiry (FSI) Final Report, a 320-page document providing recommendations on five main themes. The FSI committee and secretariat received 6,800 submissions and held hundreds of stakeholder meetings. The FSI crew also met with … [Read more...]

Double contributions tax for high-income earners

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Anyone with an adjusted taxable income of more than $300,000 (including rental property losses and other items) now pays 30% tax on concessional contributions paid into a super fund, doubling the super contributions tax bill for high-income earners. The regular contributions tax is a flat rate of … [Read more...]

Clients come first: Financial advice reform saga continues

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In recent months I have kept fairly quiet about the financial advice reforms. Until recently, what more was there to say about a set of rules designed to favour the outdated business models of many financial planning businesses? Note that I am not targeting the advice provided by the firms with … [Read more...]