Australia’s Rest Super retirement fund announces investing in crypto for its 1.8M members
Australia’s superannuation fund Rest Super is now set to become the first retirement fund in the country that has invested in cryptocurrencies. The fund has registered more than $46.8 billion worth of assets under management (AUM) with about 1.8 million members. Superannuation equals to a 401k or Individual Retirement Account in the United States that is compulsory for all employees.
Until now, the $2.4 trillion sectors has shown extreme caution where cryptocurrencies are concerned. During Rest Super’s Annual General Meeting on November 23, the firm’s Chief Investment Officer Andrew Lill has told members that the company views digital assets as an “important part” of its portfolio. However, they would proceed “carefully and cautiously” since it is still “a very volatile investment.”
Lill has also said that due to its volatility, any allocation exposure in terms of cryptocurrencies is likely to be part of the institution’s diversified portfolio and marked initially by “a fairly small allocation that may, over time, build.” Lill then went on to add his view that offering members exposure to crypto and blockchain tech could prove to be a “stable source of value” amid a time where investors are flocking to cryptocurrencies as a hedge against fiat-based inflation. He said that in an era of inflation, crypto could become “a potentially good place to invest.”
Following the CIO’s speech, a spokesperson from Rest had clarified in a statement that it is considering cryptocurrencies as a source for diversifying their members’ retirement savings, but they “would not be investing in the immediate future.”
The spokesperson also said that they were currently conducting extensive research into the asset class before making any decisions, adding that they were also considering “the security and regulatory aspects of investing in this class.”
The comments are in contrast from the Australian Super this week, where the chief executive of the $167 billion funds, Paul Schroder, had stated that they “don’t see cryptocurrency as investible for their members.”
In October, it was reported that Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC), a state-owned investment fund, was aiming at gaining crypto exposure. However, the firm has recently told Business Insider that the reports were “incorrectly implied”. It also played down any chances of digital asset adoption moves.
Head of Currency at QIC, Stuart Simmons, had also said while he expects superannuation funds to successfully adopt crypto in the future, it is “probably going to represent a trickle, rather than a flood.”
The discussion has come at a highly bullish time in the Australian crypto market after there was the announcement of the development of extensive regulatory proposals in the Senate committee for pushing the nation towards being the next crypto hub.
Simultaneously, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s (CBA) had made a move at providing crypto trading through its banking app earlier this month.
As the country awaits to see the which major traditional finance companies would be the next to embrace crypto, CEO of CBA, Matt Comyn has stated earlier in the week that the bank had been more motivated by “FOMO as opposed to being worried about risks associated with digital assets.”