Quantifying Australia’s gender superannuation gap

Rohan Best*, Noura Saba

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper quantifies the factors contributing to Australia’s gender gap in superannuation balances. Around 60 per cent of the gap can be attributed to the prior stock of superannuation, for respondents who had superannuation balances in both 2014 and 2018 in the Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia Survey. This is partly due to the accumulation of the prior gap with investment returns. Financial literacy and risk aversion explain around 7 per cent of the gap in total, such as through impacts on subsequent investment returns. Work patterns and wage rates affect contributions and explain approximately 30 per cent of the superannuation gap in total.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
JournalEconomic Record
Early online date12 May 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 May 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This paper uses unit record data from the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey. The HILDA Project was initiated and is funded by the Australian Government Department of Social Services (DSS) and is managed by the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research (Melbourne Institute). The findings and views reported in this paper, however, are those of the authors and should not be attributed to either DSS or the Melbourne Institute. Access to the data is through the Melbourne Institute. The Stata code is attached as Supporting information.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Economic Society of Australia

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Quantifying Australia’s gender superannuation gap'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this