Understanding what your super is invested in

As Australia’s largest super fund, AustralianSuper owns a vast number of investments both within Australia and overseas. This breadth of investments means that members benefit from growth opportunities from across the world and across different types of assets.

Members often want to know what their super is invested in. This article provides an overview, looking at the different asset classes where AustralianSuper invests along with examples of specific investments.

Asset classes and examples of AustralianSuper holdings

With over $260 billion in member retirement savings1, AustralianSuper invests in a broad range of asset classes including listed shares, private equity, direct property, unlisted infrastructure, credit, fixed interest and cash.

Video_Thumbnail

 

Listed shares

Owning listed shares means owning part of companies that are listed on a public exchange, like the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX). We invest in Australian and international companies.

Listed shares generally make money in two ways – through an increase in the share price and when companies pay dividends. Share prices can go up and down and are affected by many factors including company performance and economic conditions. We aim to invest in high-quality companies that will perform better than the broader market over the long-term. Some of the companies we invest in include Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Woolworths and JB Hi-Fi in Australia. Investments in international markets include Microsoft, Alphabet (Google) and Amazon.

 

Private equity

Private equity involves investing in companies that are not listed on a public exchange like the ASX.  AustralianSuper invests in private equity along with specialised private equity managers. By co-investing and co-underwriting transactions, our team gains deeper insights on private equity investments and is able to make larger investments (with lower costs) that may perform better than listed shares.

Read more: Investing like no other fund can

 

Direct property

As part of the direct property portfolio, we’re invested in residential, retail, industrial and commercial real estate. This includes housing estates and apartments, shopping centres, warehouses and office buildings. Returns can be generated from increases in property value from development and price appreciation, as well as rental income. Good management of these investments can improve the value of the property as well as the income.

King’s Cross Estate in the UK is an example of a large-scale regeneration project. AustralianSuper owns 70% of the property, making it the largest holding in the property portfolio. This mixed-use precinct has delivered strong returns for the portfolio from the outset.

The growth of digitisation and e-commerce has led to 2 property investments in Sydney.

  • The Moorebank Logistics Park joins 2 state-of-the-art facilities. One connects to Port Botany - supporting import-export freight and the other services the interstate rail network. The 243-hectare site has the capacity to develop up to 850,000 square metres of warehouse space.
  • The Mascot development site is a large-scale industrial asset in southern Sydney. The 13.8-hectare site provides opportunities for redevelopment into a state-of-the art mix of logistics and office facilities.

Read more: Understanding direct property

 

Unlisted infrastructure

Infrastructure investments are assets that provide essential public services.  These include bridges, roads, airports and power plants. Investments like these help support economic development and improve living conditions for communities. AustralianSuper’s portfolio includes large-scale infrastructure investments in Australia and international markets.

WestConnex is a toll road project in NSW, Australia that has a 70-kilometre network of roads. This includes the M4, M5 East and M8, as well as the M4-M5 link (due to complete in 2023) and the M5 West (from December 2026). As the largest infrastructure investment in the portfolio, it has the double benefit of providing better transport in NSW, as well as generating returns for members.

The portfolio also includes international infrastructure investments. The investment in Peel Ports, the second largest port operator in the United Kingdom, includes seven sites. The port group handles over 70 million tonnes of cargo per year and 15% of the UK’s total port traffic. AustralianSuper owns 32.4% of this asset.

 

Credit

Think of credit as a loan.  Credit investments involve providing finance for an agreed period in exchange for a return. AustralianSuper has a specialised team that invests in private credit opportunities directly in the property and infrastructure.

Examples of AustralianSuper’s credit investments include loans to One Crown Place, UK to support residential construction in central London and loans to Heathrow Airport to provide extra liquidity during times of lower air traffic.

 

Fixed Interest

Fixed interest investments provide income from interest payments. These investments are defensive assets in a portfolio which can protect against market volatility because they can be less risky than asset classes like listed shares. Fixed interest investments include debt issued by governments and companies. Australian examples include bonds issued by the Commonwealth of Australia and companies such as AGL and Westpac. International holding examples include government debt from countries like the United States, Germany and the United Kingdom, and corporate debt from a range of international companies.

 

Cash

Cash investments are short-term money market instruments. These are issued by banks, like the CBA, NAB and Westpac, governments and companies. These types of investments are considered low risk, however, the asset class also has lower returns compared to other asset classes.

 

Global diversification

AustralianSuper has investments throughout the world. This helps support Australia’s economy while members benefit from growth in local and international markets. Importantly, this global approach reduces investment risk through diversification.

Almost half of AustralianSuper’s investments are in Australia. The chart below provides examples of assets and their locations. These include the United States, United Kingdom, India, Australia and New Zealand.

Source: AustralianSuper

A map of the world that shows the location of AustralianSuper investments.  Locations include the United States, United Kingdom, India, Australia and New Zealand.

AustralianSuper currently has over 3,500 investments2. Twice a year, the Fund publishes a list of all investments to help keep you informed. For a comprehensive look at where your super is invested visit: What we invest in 

What we invest in

We believe in transparency around our investments. You can view a full list of assets, and more information on which options invest in which.

What we invest in

 

Investment returns are not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.

This may include general financial advice which doesn’t take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before making a decision consider if the information is right for you and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement, available at australiansuper.com/pds or by calling 1300 300 273. A Target Market Determination (TMD) is a document that outlines the target market a product has been designed for. Find the TMDs at australiansuper.com/TMD.

AustralianSuper Pty Ltd ABN 94 006 457 987, AFSL 233788, Trustee of AustralianSuper ABN 65 714 394 898.


Compare us

Choosing the right fund could mean more money in the future, giving you more confidence in your long-term retirement plan performance.

compare us
Back to top