And it’s better late than never. It’s the importance of continuing a disciplined investment regime after retirement. Around the world, people prefer to take a lump sum rather than programmed withdrawals from their super. Remember I said earlier that each dollar saved tends to grow to ten over a lifetime? We live so long these days (in a large group of couples, half will have one partner survive beyond age 90) that six of those ten dollars accrue after retirement.
You’ve only accumulated four out of every potential ten dollars when you take the lump sum – and so if you spend it rapidly, and don’t have a disciplined investment and drawdown plan, you’re blowing a big part of your potential super. That’s why there’s now a tax break if you leave your super invested after retirement, to encourage you to find those extra six dollars. So, those are the three areas for improving super: use the target date approach; don’t imagine you’re an investment expert; and draw down your super gradually. Super is as important as work, because it provides an income to live on. Do it well.