Media Super, the $3 billion fund, expects annual returns for so-called balanced funds to average 8 per cent per annum over the next 30 years, the same as the previous three decades.

The fund, established in 1986, considers a balanced fund to have between 60 per cent and 70 per cent of its portfolio to be invested in stocks and 30 per cent to 40 per cent in bonds, Australian cash, property, infrastructure and private equity.

“There is quite a vigorous debate about whether a balanced fund should be sitting in terms of asset allocation,” says Gerard Noonan, chair of Media Super and president of the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees.

“Is exposure to stocks too high when 60 per cent of the portfolio is in that asset class? I’m comfortable with a 60:40 or 70:30 split. After all, we’re a 30-year play,” says Noonan.

He will be attending a conference for fund trustees on the Mornington Peninsula that begins January 23 organised by Conexus Ltd., publisher of I&T News.

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