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Retirees at greater risk of depleting super

The prevalence of Australians outliving their super is expected to rise, placing greater pressure on the age pension, according to a recent study.

The study, released last week by the Actuaries Institute, predicts that increasing numbers of Australians will completely deplete their superannuation fund before their deaths.

“This is because, between the ages of 75 and 85, about a fifth of balances are being drawn down at more than 10 per cent of their balances, which is not sustainable for those who live longer than average,” the institute said in a statement.

However, the report also found that retirees are increasingly worried about the longevity of their super, with most “very cautious” when it comes to spending.

With reduced returns and the Australian age expectancy to rise, it is not surprising that older Australians are feeling the pinch, according to a paper released by traded funds manager Betshares.

“This prospect is a growing reality for Australians, due to rising life expectancy and lower returns on safer assets than in previous years,” Betashares’ chief economist David Bassanese said.

“This is giving rise to ‘longevity risk’ or the risk of outliving your retirement nest egg.”

With some retirees unable to wait out the equity market slump, they may end up compensating by taking on greater risk, Mr Bassanese said.

“The trade-off between investing safely and preserving one’s investment nest egg versus taking on more risk in the search for higher returns is becoming much more acute.”

Retirees at greater risk of depleting super
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