Middle-earning workers in their 20s, 30s and 40s need to have much higher super balances to have a comfortable retirement if they remain single.
The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia recommends $595,000 for a comfortable retirement if someone is 67 and eligible for the superannuation.
That would be enough for an occasional vacation abroad, or for a new car every few years for someone who has paid off their house.
To get there, someone with an average pre-tax income of $65,000 needs to have $220,000 in super savings by age 45.
But someone making $90,000 a year — a level slightly below the average full-time salary of $95,581 — only needs to have $176,000 in retirement savings.
This corresponds to a difference of 25 percent in the required social benefits between an average earner and an average earner.
Middle-income workers in their 20s, 30s and 40s need to have much higher super balances to have a comfortable retirement if they remain single (pictured are young women at Royal Randwick Racecourse in Sydney).
At age 30, the need to have much more in super is even more pronounced.
A middle-income earner will need $68,000 in super savings, compared to just $8,000 for someone earning $90,000.
That means someone on $65,000 needs to have eight and a half times the level of super.
A salary of $90,000 when you’re young also helps, since at age 25 you don’t even need to have a pension to have a comfortable retirement.
But a middle-income earner making $65,000 would need to have saved $29,000 in extras by age 25.
The mandatory employer super contribution is 11 percent and will be increased by half a percentage point on July 1st each year until it reaches 12 percent in 2025.
ASFA said this meant most young people were on track to have enough saved for a comfortable retirement, with more going into super rather than future pay rises.
The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia recommends $595,000 for a comfortable retirement when someone turns 67 and is eligible for the superannuation (stock image pictured).
“Younger Australians who receive contributions of 12 per cent of wages for most of their working lives are much more likely to be on track,” it said.
For couples, ASFA recommends $690,000 for a comfortable retirement.
But even $100,000 is enough for a very modest retirement for a single person or a retirement couple, assuming they own the house outright.
The median super balance for men aged 66 is $216,000, compared to $202,000 for women of the same age.
Super Consumers Australia recommends $258,000 for a modest retirement, which would mean vacationing in Australia rather than going abroad every few years.
Super level for a salary of $65,000
AGE 22: $8,000
AGE 25: $29,000
AGE 30: $68,000
AGE 35: $112,000
AGE 40: $162,000
AGE 45: $220,000
AGE 50: $284,000
AGE 55: $360,000
AGE 60: $444,000
AGE 65: $542,000
AGE 66: $565,000
Super level for a salary of $90,000
AGE 22: $0
AGE 25: $0
AGE 30: $8,000
AGE 35: $57,000
AGE 40: $113,000
AGE 45: $176,000
AGE 50: $249,000
AGE 55: $332,000
AGE 60: $425,000
AGE 65: $535,000
AGE 66: $560,000