The list of failures continues to grow, the list of official bodies too weak, too chummy, too lacking fire-in-the-belly to help the millions of Australians unknowingly stuck in under-performing superannuation funds.
The appalling track record of the gormless Australian Securities and Investments Commission is legendary.
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority was exposed in the royal commission last week as being extraordinarily negligent, incapable of doing its job, sitting on its hands and looking out the window instead of using its powers to end malfeasance.
The government itself, until embarrassed by the royal commission, notoriously favoured the worst elements of the superannuation system and tried to prevent rudimentary reforms of the wealth management industry.
Now add to that list the Productivity Commission – a body that used to be regarded as the honest voice of policy reason among the noise of politics.
But when it comes to holding slack superannuation funds to account, the PC, along with ASIC and APRA, turns pussycat and treads softly.
Oh, the PC’s superannuation report in May generated headlines, “blowing up the default super system” according to the Australian Financial Review. Well, probably not.
What the PC certainly didn’t do is use the power it has to force those with their fingers in the $2.6 trillion lolly jar to disgorge the information they would prefer to keep secret.
As the commission’s report stated: “Questions [to super funds] focused on related party transactions in the Commission’s survey of funds received disconcertingly low response rates … ”
Michael Pascoe, The New Daily