Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Superannuation (Pensions)

Ever wondered why Australians are so obsessed by the economy?

There are lots of reasons given, including these in a recent speech by former Reserve Bank governor Ian Macfarlane.

I think it's got a lot to do with the fact that Australians have a higher percentage of variable rate mortgages than most countries. meaning that decisions by the RBA (a key piece of economic news) matter more to Australians than those people in countries where mortgages are fixed. According to the RBA:
In some countries, including Australia and the United Kingdom, variable-rate loans predominate, whereas in New Zealand and Canada, fixed-rate loans of between two and five years are more common; in the United States and some European countries long-term fixed-rate mortgages predominate. The features offered on housing loans also differ significantly across countries; for example, loans with redraw facilities and flexible repayment structures are relatively uncommon in many continental European countries.
It's also got something to do with the globalisation of the economy and the efforts by the Labor governments of the 1980s and 1990s, particularly Paul Keating to 'educate' - persuade and coerce - Australians about the need for change.

But it might also have something to do with the fact that more Australians have their super tied up in shares than anywhere else. This graph from the OECD was reproduced on MacroBusiness:

1 comment:

  1. This is a very good post on the Australian superannuation investment compared globally.


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