APRA seeks to up super data collection

5 December 2023
| By Laura Dew |
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APRA is proposing to collect more data in areas including super funds’ trustee board governance and investment liquidity and valuations.

In the latest phase of its Superannuation Data Transformation project, the prudential regulator’s discussion paper outlined the areas where more data is needed.

These are:

  • Trustee profile: Enhanced data on the business model and structure of trustees, trustee boards, and board committees to provide greater insights into the governance practices and effectiveness of superannuation trustees.
  • Superannuation fund profile: Additional data to provide APRA with a more detailed understanding of product distribution arrangements between funds and intermediaries such as employer sponsors and promoters, as well as complex product features such as life cycle strategies. 
  • Investments: New and enhanced investments data, including data to inform assessments of investment governance and exposure to liquidity and valuation risk. This is in line with APRA’s strengthened Prudential Standard SPS 530 Investment Governance (SPS530) and Prudential Practice Guide SPG 530 Investment Governance (SPG 530).  
  • Indirect investment costs: APRA will seek data on total annual indirect investment costs associated with each investment manager. The proposal will address a key gap in APRA’s data on investment expenses.
  • Financial statements: APRA also proposes to collect trustees’ financial statements data. The data will help APRA understand the flow of monies within superannuation trustees and the superannuation system and support assessments of financial resilience. 

Deputy chair Margaret Cole said APRA has aimed to minimise disruption by focusing on data that is already held by the funds.

“Deeper and richer data from trustees will significantly enhance APRA’s ability to improve industry transparency, governance, and practices and ultimately lead to better outcomes for members” Cole said.

“In developing these proposals, APRA has sought to minimise regulatory burden on industry by requesting data that trustees already hold. We have also worked closely with peer agencies with the goal of ‘collect once and share’ where feasible.”

Submissions on the consultation will close on 31 March 2024.

In October, the regulator announced it is consulting on the publication of data around superannuation funds’ expenditure to provide members with greater transparency of their funds.

This could include total expenses of promotion, marketing and sponsorship, all expenses with industrial bodies, all expenses with related parties, total director and executive remuneration expenses, and political donations.

Under the additional asset allocation data, this could include property and infrastructure by sector classification, ownership model and development stage, alternative strategy funds by strategy type, listed equity by market capitalisation type and active/passive management, and private equity by development stage and strategy type.

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