Transport super fund growing despite downturn


Funds invested in the transport industry's leading super fund are safe despite the global economic uncertainty

Transport super fund growing despite downturn
Transport super fund growing despite downturn
By Samantha Freestone

Funds invested in the transport industry's leading super fund are safe despite the global economic uncertainty, its managers say.

Transport Industry Superannuation (TIS) fund has invested in "quality assets" and has only lost "3 or 4 percent" in the last quarter despite the economic upheaval, Financial Investment Manager Richard McCouiag says.

McCouiag tells ATN TIS "has a suite of high quality assets including direct-property industrial property in Victoria and commercial and residential property in Queensland".

"All these, despite the property down-turn, have all re-valued upwards," he says.

But the direct property investments have impacted on the fund.

Direct property - that is properties listed on the stock exchange such as those with Macquarie Bank’s office funds - have experienced a downturn, which McCouiag explains has the same function as a share.

"We have been affected there is no doubt about it," he admits.

But a high proportion of TIS’s assets are a combination of listed assets, he says, as well as property.

"We would have lost maybe 3 to 4 percent over the last quarter. I think the stock market is down 18 or 19 percent for the last quarter," he says.

He urges investors to keep investing with the fund as much of TIS’s asset base is undervalued currently by the market.

"We set out to do 3 percent better than the rate of inflation but up until June 30 we have been achieving 5 percent, on average, better than that rate," he says.

McCouiag is optimistic about the future of the economy and sees Australia better equipped to weather the storm.

Retirees, McCouiag says, should look at their situation individually.

"Each members' circumstances should be considered individually, but as a general principle I do think that now is a bad time to retire," he says.

"If you need to you should take as much money as you need but leave some funds with TIS to wait for the economy to recover."

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