The establishment of new SMSFs appears to be at the lowest level since June 2010, according to ATO statistics.
According to the most recent ATO SMSF statistics only 6,504 SMSFs were established in the March 2016 quarter. If accurate this would be the lowest level of SMSF establishment since at least June 2010 – the earliest quarterly figures still available from the ATO.
The December 2015 quarterly SMSF establishment was the previous lowest since June 2010. However these figures are subject to revisions.
“Quarterly establishments and wind-ups for recent quarters may be understated, because there is often a time lag between when this event occurs and when we receive notification from the SMSF,” says the ATO.
The wind-up figures for the March 2016 quarter – only 70 funds wound-up – seems particularly low. The average number of wind-ups in prior March quarters is 851.
“Most of the information in this report is estimated, and caution should be taken when using or presenting this data. The estimates have been based on the data provided by SMSFs reporting their financial position as at 30 June of the relevant financial year,” notes the ATO.
Despite this slowing growth there was still a record number of SMSFs in the March 2016 quarter – 572,424 SMSFs with a total of 1,085,286 members. This is a 1.14% increase in the number of SMSFs compared to the December 2015 quarter and a 4.56% increase since March 2015.