What you need to know about investment returns

There is a well-known saying “short and sweet”, but when it comes to super returns it’s all about the long-term. But what does this really mean?

Hand stacking wooden blocks

#1 Look at long term returns

Super is a long-term investment – generally your super account builds up over your whole working life and is then drawn down over several decades in retirement.  So what really matters is how your investment performs in the long term.
While we keep you up to date about investment performance in your quarterly super statements, you can also review investment returns over the longer term via our website including over five, seven and ten year periods.

#2 Volatility is normal for many investments

It's normal to see cycles of highs followed by periods of lows - and sometimes even negative returns. This is known as market volatility. This volatility can affect the returns you see on your statements but isn’t necessarily cause to panic (or celebrate). Longer-term returns will give you the most accurate picture of how your super is tracking.

#3 Avoid knee-jerk reactions

TelstraSuper Chief Investment Officer Graeme Miller says that when markets do dip, one of the most important thing is to avoid is making knee-jerk reactions.
“The diversified nature of our investments means that we’re able to ride out a bumpy market and still secure investment returns in the long run,” he says. 

#4 Be comfortable with the level of risk you take on

As a general rule, the higher the risk, the higher the return. However the level of risk suitable for you depends on your personal needs (like time to retirement) and your personal risk appetite. TelstraSuper has a range of investment options you can choose from with varying levels of risk. 
You can get simple advice about where you should invest over the phone from an adviser from TelstraSuper Financial Planning at no additional cost as part of your TelstraSuper membership*.

#5 Don’t panic if you’re in or near retirement

It can be frightening to see your balance fluctuate when you’re nearing or in retirement. If you’re newly retired you could spend another 20 or more years in retirement. This gives you plenty of time to live through the market cycles (some of which will be downward).

The retirement years are also a good time to review your options and how you draw down on your super. TelstraSuper Financial Planning can help provide you with peace of mind through these times of volatility and set up your finances so they are better prepared for future investment market changes.

You can also speak to a TelstraSuper Financial Planning Adviser over the phone and discuss your investments and how you might invest them in retirement. You can speak to an Adviser by calling 1300 033 166. Read our article about investing in retirement.

Current market conditions

In 2017 we had a prolonged period of especially strong and stable returns – spoilt with consistent double digits! However, this year we have seen return to a more normal pattern with periods of volatility. 

TelstraSuper’s investment team is constantly monitoring investment markets for risks and opportunities.  Right now, our portfolios are somewhat more conservatively positioned than usual, but we’re not making big changes to our strategy.    This is because we are focused on the long term and we are confident that we have right settings in place to meet our investment objectives and generate positive retirement outcomes for members over the long term. 

Want to know more?

If you have any questions or concerns about your super, consider speaking with an Adviser from TelstraSuper Financial Planning. To speak to an Adviser, call 1300 033 166 between 8.30am and 5.30pm (Melbourne time) Monday to Friday or request a call.
see our latest unit prices
learn more about investment risk
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*excludes the Direct Access option.
Investment returns are not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.