Academic Paper | SMSF Sector Performance 2020-2021

The SMSF Association engaged the University of Adelaide to examine the overall financial performance of self-managed super funds (SMSFs) compared to APRA-regulated funds.

This joint research venture is based on financial statement data from over 310,000 SMSFs for the period 2020-2021. This is a significant sample size as it represents more than 50% of all existing SMSFs. 

This research contributes to the existing evidence on the strong financial performance of the SMSF sector.

It extends the research completed by the University of Adelaide for the 2017–19 period, and again shows SMSFs perform on par with, or better than, APRA funds in some financial years.

This is the full research report compiled for the SMSF Association by the International Centre for Financial Services, The University of Adelaide and prepared by George Mihaylov BMa&CompSc(Stat) BFin(Hons) PhD Adel, Chee Cheong BCom(CorpFin) BCom(Hons) PhD Adel and Ralf Zurbruegg BSc(Econ) LSE, MSc PhD Manc.

With recognition of data support jointly by BGL Corporate Solutions, Class Limited, and SuperConcepts Pty Ltd.


At the time of publishing, the contents of this resource were accurate and correct.

Disclaimer: Technical Papers contain factual information only and are prepared without considering particular objectives, financial circumstances and needs. The information provided is not a substitute for legal, tax and financial product advice. The information contained in this document does not constitute advice given by the SMSF Association to you. If you rely on this information yourself or to provide advice to other persons, then you do so at your own risk. The SMSF Association is not licensed to provide financial product advice, legal advice or taxation advice. We recommend that you seek appropriate professional advice before relying upon the information in this technical paper. While the SMSF Association believes that the information provided is accurate, no warranty is given as to its accuracy and persons who rely on this information do so at their own risk. The information provided in this paper is not considered financial advice for the purposes of the Corporations Act 2001. © SMSF Association