58% have never made a voluntary superannuation contribution

Over half of Australians have never made a voluntary superannuation contribution, according to research by ING DIRECT.

The ING DIRECT / Financial Services Council Annual Super Sentiment Index shows that 58% of Australians have never made a voluntary superannuation contribution. This is despite an increase to 20% the proportion of people saying there was nothing preventing them from making a voluntary super contribution in 2014/15, up from 8% in 2013/14.

The research shows that 15% of Australians have made a voluntary contribution to super only once or twice. 24% of respondents said they made regular voluntary super contributions, up from 21% in the previous year.

“The key factor that has traditionally held people back from making voluntary contributions to their super has been personal financial circumstances, but our research shows that this barrier is declining, from 62% to 53% in the past few years,” said ING DIRECT Executive Director for Customers, John Arnott.

“Making voluntary super contributions is a great way to build your super, a little at a time each year, without hurting your hip pocket.  It can also be a great way to maximise tax efficiencies at year end and you’ll certainly appreciate these little and often investments as you get closer to your retirement,” he said.

However care should be taken around the superannuation contribution caps, and tax deductions for personal superannuation contributions are restricted to people with limited income from employment, and so professional advice should be sought.

The ING DIRECT / FSC Superannuation Sentiment Index is conducted using a national survey of 1,000 working Australians combined with focus groups.

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