Over half of Kiwis may be in the wrong KiwiSaver fund

by Ksenia Stepanova07 Oct 2019

Digital advice firm kōura says over half of kiwis are in the wrong KiwiSaver fund - something which could result in them missing out on hundreds of thousands of dollars when they reach retirement.

kōura’s conducted a survey asking New Zealanders about KiwiSaver behaviours, and found that as many as 53% of Kiwis could be in the wrong fund. Furthermore, only 23% reported a good understanding of KiwiSaver despite 69% agreeing that it is “extremely important” for their retirement.

kōura says the root of the problem is a lack of good advice, as the focus is largely on getting customers to sign up for KiwiSaver rather than educating them on how to use it to achieve the best possible outcome.

“KiwiSaver is a critical tool for people’s retirement, yet if they are intending to rely on their KiwiSaver to retire, their income is likely to be less than half of their current income,” kōura stated.

“This is significantly less than the 70% benchmark that is widely recommended for a comfortable retirement.

Advice and help is really hard to come by. Financial advisers are seen as out of reach for most people, and our research shows most would prefer online research to an adviser in any event.”

kōura has just launched its digital advice platform which allows customers to analyse their KiwiSaver, and ensure that they are in the right fund. The survey was done by co-founders Rupert Carlyon and Warren Couillault to mark the launch, and is the third KiwiSaver scheme that Couillault has established.

This new firm is the latest to embrace the new digital advice era, which has been steadily growing in popularity over the past few years. The ability to offer digital advice is currently regulated by the FMA through an exemption system, which will be replaced with the introduction of the new financial advice regime next year.

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