Women, superannuation and the SGC
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Superannuation is the Commonwealth Government’s preferred system for the provision of income in retirement. By definition, occupational superannuation benefits those with a strong attachment to the workforce. Employment in a part-time capacity and/or a low-paid, low status occupation places a significant constraint on the capacity of individuals to accumulate private retirement savings. The policy shift towards this form of retirement income system thus has particular adverse consequences for women. Using micro-simulations this paper estimates the final lump-sums that women with a range of different work and other characteristics could expect to achieve. Adequacy assessments suggest that, even under a fully-matured Superannuation Guarantee Charge system, a typical woman will remain heavily dependent on the age pension in retirement. The results highlight the need for greater public debate over government policy with respect to the whole retirement income system, rather than a narrow focus on superannuation.