Peak body ASFA is calling for the government to close the gap in retirement savings between women and men.

Women generally have lower super balances than men across the entire age distribution. Leading up to retirement age, the median super balance for women is around 25 per cent lower than men’s. 

ASFA has long advocated for policy change to reduce the super gender gap and has recommended that a ‘Super Baby Bonus’ be adopted, whereby the government would deposit $5,000 in the super accounts of women upon the birth of a child. 

Analysis by ASFA has indicated the combination of super on the government’s paid parental leave scheme and the Super Baby Bonus would almost fully offset the impact of a year off work. 

The LISTO is a government payment that effectively refunds tax paid on super contributions. Currently, it applies to people who earn $37,000 or less, with a maximum payment of $500. 

ASFA considers that this threshold should be $45,000 to equate with the top of the second-lowest income tax bracket, and that the maximum payment be increased accordingly to $700. 

This change would increase the number of women benefiting from the scheme from around 1.4 million to approximately 1.9 million per year.