Spending in Retirement and the Taper Rate

andrew boal


Written by leading superannuation actuary, and PPCC member, Andrew Boal the Dialogue argues that the asset test 'taper trap' encourages some retirees to spend their savings quickly, and risk living on the Age Pension alone.

To avoid the ‘trap’ Andrew concludes that all Australians, but especially a ‘middle group’ of Australians with between $300,000 and $800,000 in retirement savings, need:

  • encouragement to acquire longevity protection to give them confidence to spend more in retirement, to live a better life;
  • a more equitable taper rate that does not unduly encourage retirees to spend their savings too quickly; and
  • low cost access to financial information and advice to help them make better decisions because the retirement landscape is highly complex.

The Dialogue is a series of papers written by actuaries and published by the Actuaries Institute. The papers aim to stimulate discussion on important emerging issues. The opinions expressed in this paper are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of either the Institute of Actuaries of Australia (the ‘Institute’), its members, directors, officers, employees, agents, or that of the employers of the author