Contributions to SMSFs

Over the five -year period to 30 June 2012, contributions to the SMSF sector averaged $26.3 billion a year (member $17.5 billion, employer $8.2 billion and other $0.5 billion8 ) – see appendix 1, table 3.

Since 2008, member contributions averaged just under 70% of all SMSF contributions. The ratio of member and employer contributions to SMSFs has remained relatively consistent over the period at approximately two to one.

In contrast, the median member contribution was slightly less than the median employer contribution from 2009 to 2011. For 2012, the median member contribution increased to $20,600 compared to $20,000 for employers.

Over the five years, most member contributions were to SMSFs with assets between $500,000 and $5 million. Employer contributions were mostly spread across SMSFs with assets between $200,000 and $2 million.

Analysis shows that the age of an SMSF has no relationship to the proportion of member contributions compared to employer contributions received by an SMSF.9

Total annual contributions to SMSFs over the five years fell by 17% compared to contributions to all super funds, which grew by over 1% over the same period.10

Annual member contributions to SMSFs fell by approximately 11% and employer contributions by 27% over this period. This compares to member contributions to all super funds which fell by 26%, although employer contributions increased by 22%.

This is not unexpected given economic circumstances during the period. It had also been anticipated that government initiatives introduced from the year ended 30 June 2010 would have slowed growth in member contributions.11

Graph 3 compares contributions to SMSFs as a proportion of all super fund contributions for the years ended 30 June 2008 to 30 June 2012.

As at 30 June 2012, contributions to SMSFs represent only 22% of all super fund contributions. This is due to the low proportion of employer contributions to SMSFs (9%). In contrast, member contributions to SMSFs increased to 54% of all member contributions to super funds in that year.

Graph 3: Contributions to SMSFs as a percentage of total contributions (member, employer, other and total)

Graph 3: Contributions to SMSFs as a percentage of total contributions (member, employer, other and total)

The percentages are calculated as:SMSF (member/employer/other/total) contributions divided by total contributions (member/employer/other/total).

The depiction of other contributions to SMSFs as a proportion of those to all super funds in graph 3 has minimal effect on total super contributions. Less than 2% of total super contributions fall under this category. Analysis of other contributions to SMSFs suggests they are predominately co-contributions. The median other contributions over the five years directly reflects co-contribution limits for the relevant years.

    Last modified: 16 Dec 2013QC 37999