Seeking professional financial advice could help close the superannuation gender gap.
According to Roy Morgan Research the superannuation gender gap is 28.1%, with women on average having only 71.9% of the balance of men – $133,000 compared to $185,000. Though this is slowly closing – in 2013 the average super balance of women was $99,300, which was 67.5% of the average male balance of $147,100.
“There are obviously a number of factors that account for these differences but getting better advice on such a complex subject would be likely to help,” said Roy Morgan Research.
According to the Roy Morgan Single Source survey, men are more likely to use professionals to purchase superannuation products than women – with 14.4% of men using a professional versus 11.3% of women.
Men were more likely to use a professional of any kind, including an independent financial adviser (5.3% v 4.4%), a financial adviser working for a financial institution (4.5% v 3.9%) or an accountant (3.7% v 2.4%).
“In an area as complex and subject to change as superannuation, professional advice for both males and females has the potential to play a major role in decision making,” said Norman Morris, Roy Morgan’s Industry Communications Director.
“Currently 80.4% of males and 84.0% of females obtain their superannuation through their employer and as a result are generally not likely to receive a financial plan or overall advice on their retirement savings.”
“This research shows that with fewer women having super and those that do having a lower average balance than men, there is a risk that financial professionals may miss this important segment.”