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32nd Heron Quality Star Ratings Released

Released: 1 February, 2022

2022 Calendar Year Assessment

Leading independent superannuation and actuarial consultancy, The Heron Partnership, has released its latest half-yearly assessment of superannuation funds for calendar year 2022

Originally launched in 2006, the 2022 calendar year ratings are the 32nd public assessment undertaken by Heron. These ratings covered 100 major superannuation products and 0 pension products. The superannuation products included 33 commercial products, 48 industry funds, 19 specialist "corporate" products

The Heron Partnership's Managing Director, Chris Butler, said, "Through the Heron rating process our goal is to provide a realistic and objective representation of the strengths and weaknesses of the products. Our ratings are based on feature specific benchmarks that guide our assessors to rate each feature objectively.

Of the 100 superannuation products assessed, 66 have been judged as outstanding quality and awarded 5 Heron Quality Stars. This in itself is an endorsement of the overall quality of the superannuation products available."

The following table lists the superannuation products that received Heron's highest rating.

Outstanding Superannuation Products

Acclaim Super & Pension Mercer SmartSuper Plan - Employer Section
Active Super Mercer Super Trust - Corporate Superannuation Division
AMP MyNorth Mine Super
AMP SignatureSuper MLC MasterKey Business Super
ANZ Smart Choice Super for employers and their employees (Employer Sponsored) MLC MasterKey Super Fundamentals
Asgard Open eWRAP Super MLC Navigator Retirement Plan Series 2
AustralianSuper Personal Plan MLC Wrap Super Service Series 2
AustralianSuper Plan netwealth Super Accelerator Plus - Employer Sponsored Super
AustralianSuper Public Sector Division netwealth Super Accelerator Plus - Personal Super
AustralianSuper Select netwealth Super Wrap - Employer Sponsored Super
Aware Super NGS Super
CareSuper Employee Plan OneAnswer Frontier Personal Super and Pension
CareSuper Personal Plan Plum Super - Corporate Division
Catholic Super Plum Super - Personal Division
Cbus Industry Super Prime Super (Health Division)
Equip MyFuture Prime Super (Prime Division)
Equip MyFuture - Corporate REST Corporate
eXpand Super REST Super
FIRST Super Russell Investments Master Trust - iQ Super - Employer
HESTA Corporate Super Russell Investments Master Trust - iQ Super - For Life
HESTA Super smartMonday DIRECT
Hostplus smartMonday PRIME
Hostplus Executive Spirit Super
Hostplus Personal Super Plan Suncorp Brighter Super for Business
IOOF Employer Super Suncorp Brighter Super Personal Super
IOOF Personal Super Sunsuper for life
IOOF Pursuit Select Personal Superannuation Sunsuper for life Business
legalsuper Sunsuper for life Corporate
LGIAsuper Telstra Super - Personal Plus
Macquarie Wrap - Super and Pension Consolidator II UniSuper Accumulation 1
Macquarie Wrap - Super and Pension Manager II UniSuper Accumulation 2
Media Super - Employer Sponsored Account UniSuper Personal Account
Media Super - Personal Account VicSuper FutureSaver

MySuper Investment Option

Heron has again undertaken an assessment of each products MySuper investment option. For their MySuper rating Heron considers the type of option (LifeStages or Single Diversified), the reliability of the historical return history, the TAA range, the level and type of active/passive management, actual or indicative historical investment performance, ease of understanding and fee based on the PDS disclosure. In addition, in assessing the LifeStages options Heron considered whether the structure included cohorts, the cohort age band period and the cohort curve shape.

Based on this assessment criteria, Heron awarded 5 Stars to the following 19 products.

Outstanding MySuper Option

ANZ Smart Choice Super for employers and their employees (Employer Sponsored) Russell Investments Master Trust - iQ Super - Employer
Bendigo SmartStart Super Russell Investments Master Trust - iQ Super - For Life
BUSSQ MySuper smartMonday PRIME
CareSuper Employee Plan Sunsuper for life
Equip MyFuture Sunsuper for life Business
Equip MyFuture (Corporate) Sunsuper for life Corporate
Mine Super Telstra Super - Personal Plus
NGS Super TWUSUPER
QSuper - Accumulation Account VicSuper FutureSaver
REI Super  

The assessment of personal and corporate superannuation products undertaken by Heron covers about 130 key product features that are grouped under 5 Areas of Importance of Investment Arrangements, Insurance, Contributions, Ancillary Benefits, and Communications. Investments and Insurance have the greatest impact on a product's rating with weightings of 55% and 30% respectively.

Based on Heron's numeric rating the following products have been designated as Top Ten MySuper Products.

  • AustralianSuper Plan (including Personal Plan, Public Sector Division and Select)
  • Cbus Industry Super
  • HESTA Super
  • Hostplus (including Hostplus Executive and Hostplus Personal Super Plan)
  • LGIAsuper
  • Media Super (Employer Sponsored Account and Personal Account)
  • Rest Super (including Rest Corporate)
  • Spirit Super
  • UniSuper
  • Vision Super - Vision Personal

Based on Heron's numeric rating the following products have been designated as Top Ten Products for Investment Features and as Top Ten Products for Insurance Features.

In alphabetical order the Top 10 Personal and Corporate Products in respect to Investment Features are:

Top 10 Investment Features

Personal Corporate
Asgard Open eWRAP Super AMP SignatureSuper
AustralianSuper Plan AustralianSuper Select
CareSuper Personal Plan IOOF Employer Super
Hostplus Mercer SmartSuper Plan - Employer Section
IOOF Personal Super Mercer Super Trust - Corporate Superannuation Division
Mercer SmartSuper Plan - Individual Section MLC MasterKey Business Super
NGS Super Plum Super - Corporate Division
Plum Super - Personal Division Russell Investments Master Trust - iQ Super - Employer
Sunsuper for Life Sunsuper for life Business
UniSuper Sunsuper for life Corporate

In alphabetical order the Top 10 Personal and Corporate Products in respect to Insurance Features are:

Top 10 Insurance Features

Personal Corporate
Asgard Open eWRAP Super AMP SignatureSuper
HUB24 Super HESTA Corporate Super
legalsuper IOOF Employer Super
netwealth Super Accelerator Plus - Employer Sponsored Super Mercer SmartSuper Plan - Employer Section
netwealth Super Wrap - Employer Sponsored Super Mercer Super Trust - Corporate Superannuation Division
NGS Super MLC MasterKey Business Super
smartMonday DIRECT Plum Super - Corporate Division
Telstra Super - Personal Plus Russell Investments Master Trust - iQ Super - Employer
UniSuper smartMonday PRIME
VicSuper FutureSaver Sunsuper for life Corporate

The Heron Quality Star Ratings have 5 levels as follows:

Rating Definition
5 Stars Outstanding
4 Stars Commendable
3 Stars Good
2 Stars Poor
1 Star Unacceptable

Details of the Heron Quality Star Ratings, including the assessment methodology and products awarded with 5 Heron Quality Stars, are featured on The Heron Partnership's web site and their Heron Advisor product research and comparison service.