the facts about women and super

Knowledge is power

Women in Super (WIS) believe in shining a spotlight on the inequality of our super system to create much needed change. Primarily driven by super policy reform, a core objective of WIS is to increase the retirement adequacy of Australian women.

This is an audacious task, but one that WIS is tackling head-on. Progress can only be achieved when people understand a problem, pledge their support to a solution and take action to change it.

We encourage you to learn more about the facts of our super system, so, like thousands of others around Australia, you can help us to be an agent for positive change.

Women and super - why the numbers don't stack up

  • Women currently retire with 47% less superannuation than men
  • Women live five years longer than men on average
  • Women only receive 1/3 of the government tax concessions on super (men receive the other 2/3)

Quick stats
  • 40% of older single retired women live in poverty and experience economic insecurity in retirement
  • 46.9% of the workforce are women
  • 44% of women rely on their partners income as the main source of funds for retirement
  • 8.5% of women between 65 and 74 still have a mortgage
  • The average female salary is $44,000 (including part-time workers)
  • Female graduates earn $5,000 less than male graduates in the same role
  • Women spend on average five hours more per day caring for children than men
Key factors behind the gender super gap
  • 43% of women work part-time
  • Women working full-time earn 18% less than men
  • Women take on average five years out of the workforce to care for children or family member which can cause their super savings stagnate and begin to fall behind those of men
  • The current 9.5% Superannuation Guarantee does not enable most women to accrue sufficient savings for a comfortable retirement
  • An estimated 220,000 women miss out on $125 million of superannuation contributions as they do not meet the requirement to earn $450 per month (before tax) from one employer (as many women work more than one part-time job)

Strategies to improve your retirement outcomes

  • Build savings early: making voluntary contributions early in your working life will make a big difference at retirement thanks to compounding interest.
  • Choose your super wisely: preferably have only one super fund as having multiple accounts means it is hard to keep track of how much super you have, and you'll probably be paying more fees than you should.
  • Get advice: contact your fund for advice about your super and ask questions and seek clarification if you don't understand.

Useful links

If you want to learn more about what to do about your super, check out some of the following websites:



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