September 18, 2017 - September 19, 2017 Bayview Eden, 6 Queens Road, Melbourne, VIC 3004 Australia

Superannuation Fund Risk 2017 Forum that covers risks from operational, financial and investment.

19th September 2017 - Day 2

08:20 – Registration

Participants registration and refreshments.

08:55 – Welcome address

Chairman’s address to the gathering.

09:00 – Session 1: “PONZI” Defined Benefit Funds – Lessons learned from overseas

  • Examples of problems emerging in overseas funds
  • How could overseas funds have better managed these problems
  • Could Australian DB funds experience similar issues
  • What have we learned from overseas funds’ experiences
  • How to mitigate the risk of Australian DB funds experiencing similar issues


  • David Marchant, Editor,London, Offshore Alert

09:40 – Session 2: Investment Risk To Members – Are we confusing market volatility with adequacy in retirement?

  • The most common measure of investment risk is volatility. Is this appropriate for superannuation fund members?
  • What is the true relevance of market volatility to the long term investor?
  • Is “de-risking” by moving into less volatile assets always in the member’s best interests?
  • What are the implications for “glide path” and Lifetime Accumulation strategies?
  • The key difference between volatility of market prices and volatility of income


  • David Knox, Senior Partner, Senior Actuary, Mercer

10:20 – Tea break

Refreshments and Networking opportunity for participants.

10:50 – Session 3: Short Termism Risk

  • Do the “league tables” help or hinder long term investment strategies?
  • Is daily unit pricing appropriate for superannuation funds?
  • The pros and cons of illiquid unlisted assets in a superannuation fund portfolio
  • How to measure investment performance over longer periods


11:30 – Session 4: Investment Fee Risk

  • Are we spending members’ money wisely in chasing the holy grail of active equity returns?
  • Are we risking member retirement adequacy in by focusing on peer comparisons rather than focusing on the members long term objectives?
  • How expensive is active management relative to passive?
  • Does the active return justify the fees and the increased tax expense?
  • Who are the real winners in the active management game?


  • Kyle Ringrose, Principal, Athena IOC

12:00 – Session 5: PANEL DISCUSSION: Managing Investment Risk

The roles of the chief investment officer and the chief risk officer.

  • Are investment return and investment risk management intrinsically linked?
  • Is the CIO better placed to understand and manage investment risk?
  • Is it appropriate to allocate investment risk management to the CIO
  • To what extent should the CRO manage investment risk in addition to other enterprise wide risks?
  • The roles of the Audit and Risk Committees and the Investment Committees in managing investment risk
  • Managing potential friction between the CIO and CRO

12:40 – Lunch break

Lunch and Networking opportunity for participants.

13:30 – Session 6: Sequencing Risk

  • What is sequencing risk
  • How big an issue is this for Australian superannuation fund members
  • How do target date/lifetime accumulation strategies address sequencing risk?
  • What alternative strategies can be deployed to address sequencing risk


14:10 – Session 7: Longevity Risk – Will the member outlive their superannuation savings?

  • Does the member spend too much or too little of their superannuation savings?
  • How can a fund manage longevity risk for the members?
  • To what extent can annuities provide a solution?
  • Should superannuation funds look further into managing longevity risk by providing the member with the opportunity to tap into their home equity?
  • What other strategies are available for pooling longevity risk?


  • Simon Cowan, Research Manager, Centre for Independent Studies

14:50 – Tea break

Refreshments and Networking opportunity for participants.

15:20 – Session 8: Tax Risk

Are we doing enough to address the risk of blowing out the fund’s single biggest expense?

  • Are appropriate benchmarks being set for investment managers?
  • Is investment performance measured appropriately?
  • Are common post-tax performance measurement methodologies showing the true tax cost to the fund?
  • How does overseas tax leakage occur, and how can it be managed?
  • What are some of the key strategies to reduce the risk of paying too much tax?
  • What are the risks of “sailing too close to the wind” in minimising the tax bill?

16:00 – Session 9: PANEL DISCUSSION: Class Actions Risk – Is the biggest risk in participating or not participating

  • How do class actions work?
  • What are the risks to the fund in participating?
  • What are the risks in not participating?
  • Who provides these services and what are the pros and cons of each group of service providers?
  • What are the financial risks to members of non-participation
  • What are the reputational risks to the fund of participation?
  • How to tailor a class actions program to meet the fund’s risk appetite

17:00 – End of day two

Closing remarks from the Chair.

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