What we invest in
We invest in a diverse portfolio of assets across our options.
We invest on your behalf across all major asset classes.
We invest your super in many different types of assets, such as shares, fixed interest, cash, property and infrastructure. These assets can increase in value over time and often pay regular dividends. This helps your super grow.
Asset classes we invest in
We often group similar financial or physical assets into asset classes. All asset classes have different levels of risk and expected return.
Below is an overview of the most common asset classes we invest in.
When you invest in shares (also known as equities), you’re actually buying a share of a company that can be traded on a stock exchange. You can access small and large companies across a range of industries in Australia or overseas. Shares provide gains or losses through changes in their price on the stock exchange as well as dividends (income). Shares are regarded as a high-risk investment with the potential for short-term negative returns, however they also have the potential for higher returns than most other asset classes over the long term.
Infrastructure involves investing in assets that provide essential public facilities and services such as roads, airports, seaports and power supply and generation in Australia and overseas. This investment primarily involves exposure to unlisted companies or assets. Relative to shares, infrastructure tends to have a lower risk and return profile, and assets tend to be more bond-like than share-like, despite containing some growth component. Although returns should be less volatile than other share investments, infrastructure may also produce negative returns.
Property investments include exposure to investment pools that own commercial office buildings, large retail shopping centres and industrial buildings. Property provides income in the form of rent and the value of the assets can increase or decrease in value over time. Property is generally regarded as a medium to high-risk investment, depending on the characteristics of the underlying assets. Generally, property investments provide higher returns than fixed interest or cash in the long term, but may incur negative returns in certain market conditions.
Private equity involves investing in companies that aren’t listed on a stock exchange. Investments can include Australian and overseas companies across a wide range of industries involved in venture capital, expansion capital and buy-outs. It aims to produce high long-term returns; however, it’s also a high-risk asset class and may incur negative returns over certain periods of time. Private equity is classified as a growth-orientated asset class and is likely to exhibit risks similar to those associated with listed shares over the long term.
Fixed interest involves investing in bonds issued by governments and corporations where a fixed or floating rate of interest is paid. These typically provide interest payments over the term of the security, as well as the return of the amount invested at the end of the bond’s life. The bond’s value fluctuates during its lifetime in response to a variety of factors, including changes in market interest rates.
Floating rate securities are another form of fixed interest investment. A floating rate security has a variable interest rate, whereas the interest paid by a fixed-rate security doesn't fluctuate.
Our investment in fixed interest securities may include government and credit securities of both a fixed and floating rate nature.
Capital gains or losses may also be incurred from movements in the price of fixed-interest investments, primarily as the result of movements in interest rates. Fixed interest investments may provide higher returns than cash over the long term and are generally considered low to medium risk investments. Fixed interest may also have negative returns in certain market conditions.
Credit income includes a broad array of higher yielding credit or debt instruments. This includes high-yield debt and direct lending assets and can include infrequently traded debt securities (such as corporate bonds and loans) that exhibit greater credit risk and higher expected returns relative to sovereign government debt.
Cash is made up of bank deposits and other short-term money market investments. Interest is received from a cash investment. An investment in cash generally offers the lowest returns over the long run of any asset class, but also has the lowest risk. The purchasing power of cash is reduced over time as a result of inflation.
It’s also possible that returns on the cash asset class could be negative, in an environment where short term interest rates are very low or even negative. The cash rate is set by the Reserve Bank of Australia and represents the interest rate on unsecured overnight loans between banks.
Read more about asset classes in the Investment guide.
Each of our investment options invest in a range of different asset classes to suit different investment objectives and goals.
Pre-mixed investment options
Our pre-mixed investment options invest across a range of asset classes. The mix and balance of these asset classes will depend on the investment objective and risk rating of each investment option.
We offer six pre-mixed investment options:
- Balanced (MySuper) for super and Transition pension members / Balanced for Pension members
- Long-term (available for Managed Pensions only)
Asset class investment options
Asset class investment options invest in a single asset class, as described in the investment option’s name. We offer four asset class investment options:
Investment objectives and asset allocations
Strategic asset allocation
Strategic asset allocation describe the targeted mix and balance of asset classes each investment option will invest in.
We set medium to long-term risk and return targets for each of our investment options. We then set the strategic asset allocation for each investment option to try and achieve the stated investment objective.
You can view the investment objective and strategic asset allocation for each investment option.
Actual asset allocation
Sometimes the actual asset allocation may be different from the strategic asset allocation for the pre-mixed options. This is due to market fluctuations, new investment opportunities, irregular cash flow levels and when we make changes in response to market movements. The actual asset allocations for all investment options are updated monthly and can be found in investment options.
Read more about asset allocations and investment objectives in the Investment guide.
Valuation of assets
We value our investments regularly so we can process transactions at values that are fair and equitable for all.
For valuation purposes, our investments are divided into four categories as follows:
- listed and held directly
- listed and held indirectly (through a pooled vehicle)
- unlisted and held directly
- unlisted and held indirectly (through a pooled vehicle).
How we value assets will differ for each category. For example, listed assets held directly are generally valued at their closing price on the relevant market, while unlisted assets held directly are valued according to the methodology outlined in the Valuation policy.
Our Valuation policy provides the framework for our investment valuation process. It outlines our approach to valuation issues including instruction, frequency and review. The Valuation policy is central to our investment strategy and operations and is a key component of the crediting rates process and financial statements.
There is a risk that assets, especially unlisted assets, may not be able to be sold quickly without affecting the price of the asset. Under our Liquidity policy, we monitor and manage liquidity risk for our investments constantly.
Read more about how assets are valued in the Investment guide.