Aussie ‘super’ transfer enabled

An estimated $16 billion of New Zealanders’ money currently in Australian superannuation schemes is now transferable to KiwiSaver, thanks to legislation that came into effect on July 1.

Statistics New Zealand said more than 9000 people migrated to New Zealand from Australia last year and the new rules allow for greater economic mobility between the two countries.

One of those 9000 was Timaru local Hayley Strachan.

She moved back recently after several years in Australia and had been told at the time she was unable to move her money back with her.

“I looked into transferring my money as I would rather it be with me.”

Although not ruling out moving back across the Tasman, Miss Strachan is definitely moving her funds so she has greater control and lessened fees being paid to several different funds.

Another returnee, Christina Cahill, had seen a flyer but had discarded the idea of transferring her funds as she believed it to be complicated.

Moving money into KiwiSaver is relatively easy, involving providing KiwiSaver with the name of funds that money is invested in and the tax file number. The KiwiSaver scheme will do the rest.

After being informed of the process, Miss Cahill reconsidered her stance.

“Well if it’s not going to be a pain in the butt I will do it.”

The head of Wealth Advisory for ASB, Jonathan Beale, said this was a great opportunity for New Zealand to increase the amount of money in the local stockmarket and a chance to enhance financial literacy.

“It’s a really good chance for Kiwis to see where their money is invested and have more control on what it is invested in.

As was the case in Australia, more money invested would attract companies to the sharemarket.

Increased investments in New Zealand could buoy the local economy, providing cushioning during economic downturns.

The only caution Mr Beale had for those wishing to roll over funds was that there was a transfer period of 30 days, during which there was no control over the exact day for currency trading purposes.

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