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Almost half of Aussie women do not feel in control of their finances

Almost half of Aussie women do not feel in control of their finances

MLC have released new research showing that just over half of Australian women feel in control of their finances, with the remaining half concerned about the lack of opportunities available for women to grow their super, as well as their savings.

Of all the respondents in MLC’s all-female survey, only 57 per cent of women in Australia feel “in control” of their financial situation, and have “confidence they will be able to retire comfortably”.

The staggering 43 per cent of Australian women who do not feel in control have attributed low savings (61 per cent) as the main reason why.

Further, 32 per cent of respondents said they have “less than a month’s worth of savings to live off if they needed to”.

The gender superannuation gap is real

These troubling figures coincide with recent data from The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA), who found that “while the average super balances for women are increasing, they are still well behind that of men – and the gap is growing”.

According to ASFA, the average balance of superannuation for Australians in 2015-2016 was $111,853 for men and $68,499 for women.

General Manager of MLC Advice, Jasia Fabig, believes that this research further emphasises that “while many women feel comfortable financially, more needs to be done to support them to make their future financial interests a priority.”

“What we often see is that women put the interests of others before their own, and at key moments in life – divorce, death, illness, or job loss – they are severely impacted.

“Only 34 per cent of the women MLC surveyed are putting extra money into their super, and we’d like to see this number grow.

“Women and their money matter, and we want them to be able to weather financial storms,” said Ms Fabig.

Other key findings include:

  • Despite 57 per cent of women feeling in control of their financial situation overall, only 47 per cent of single women report feeling in control of their money
  • 81 per cent of women believe they will own their own home in retirement
  • 77 per cent of women think they’ll have less than 50k left on their mortgage when they retire
  • 66 per cent of women are not participating in voluntary super contributions

MLC research also found that of the women who do not feel confident about saving for retirement, 74 per cent attribute the reason to the high cost of living in Australia, and 48 per cent put the blame on low super balances.

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What are the two types of NAB locked savings accounts?

With a locked savings account in NAB, you can earn bonus interest and learn financial discipline. NAB offers two types of locked savings accounts, each with their own terms and conditions.

The NAB Reward Saver account pays a variable base interest rate of 0.05 per cent per annum and a bonus interest of 0.55 per cent. You’re eligible for the bonus if you make a minimum of one deposit on or before the second last banking day and have no withdrawals in the month.

Meanwhile, the NAB iSaver account provides 0.05 per cent as the standard base interest rate and a fixed bonus margin of 0.55 per cent during the first four months from the date of opening the account. You can park your cash in the account and enjoy unlimited monthly transfers between linked daily bank accounts without impacting the interest rate.

What is an ANZ locked savings account?

An ANZ locked savings account locks your money and prevents you from spending. You may use a standard savings account as the account where your salary is deposited. You can then withdraw funds when needed, but aren’t able to make purchases with it. However, this account may not grow much as the continual withdrawing of funds will limit the interest you can earn.

With a locked savings account in ANZ, you know your savings will grow because you can’t access the money. You can also qualify for a bonus when you deposit at least $10 per month and don’t make any withdrawals. To help you with this further you can set up an automatic transfer from your regular ANZ savings or transaction account so you don’t forget to make a monthly deposit.

Your ANZ locked savings account offers you a base interest rate of 0.1 per cent per annum plus an additional bonus interest of 0.49 per cent per year. The interest is calculated daily and credited to your account on the last working day of the month.

What is a Westpac locked savings account?

The Westpac locked savings account (also known as "Westpac Life") can help customers reach savings goals faster through bonus interest. Customers receive 0.2 per cent standard base interest with a variable bonus rate of 0.35 per cent when the closing balance at the end of the month is higher than the opening balance.

There are some conditions to earn the bonus interest on Westpac's locked savings account, though. First, you’ll need to increase the balance each month either through a deposit or not making any withdrawals, and then link it to a Westpac Choice account and make at least five eligible payments using your debit card. Please consult your bank as to what an eligible payment is. 

Can you have multiple ING savings accounts?

Yes, you can open up to nine accounts with ING at any particular time. If you’re saving money for various goals, such as buying a car or taking a holiday, you can name each of your multiple ING savings accounts differently.

To get a Savings Maximiser account, you’ll need to deposit more than $1000 every month and make at least five additional purchases. If you also want to grow your savings, from 1st March 2021, you can earn up to 1.35 per cent per annum variable interest on one account with a balance of up to $100,000 when you also maintain an Orange Everyday account.

With ING, multiple savings accounts can help keep track of all your savings goals. All the accounts offer flexible withdrawals where you can withdraw as low or as high as you want without impacting your earning interest rate. However, you can only earn the bonus interest on one account. To apply for a Savings Maximiser account, you can visit ingdirect.com.au.