Zest! / SUPER 101

Guide to your member statement

You will soon receive your superannuation member statement. Here’s a quick guide to help you interpret what it tells you about your super.

By Son Nguyen - 6 min 30 sec read


A little about Son

Son is the Complaints Manager and Senior Product Specialist for the Russell Investments Master Trust. With over a decade of experience in the financial services industry, he specialises in all things superannuation, and is committed to making sure that members understand the various aspects of their super and retirement journey. One of his specialist responsibilities is the delivery of annual statements.

Article updated December 2023

How well do you know your super account? Having a strong understanding of its structure, performance and features can go a long way when it comes to growing your super and managing it well.

A key source of information on your account is your member statement. It maps out the details of your super, insurance and investments, including its performance over the year.

While it's designed to be easily understood, it does hold a lot of information, plenty of super terminology and a number of charts and tables. With this in mind, we prepared a quick guide to help you interpret your statement, which we'll be sending your way soon.

Getting started

When you open your statement, the first thing you will see is a cover letter explaining some options and important information.

After the cover letter, you will find a page listing your personal details. Check that these are correct and that your Tax File Number is listed as ‘Provided’. This will ensure you are paying the right amount of tax and that your fund can receive all types of contributions.

Key highlights

The next part of your member statement outlines key facts about your account.

What your super was worth as at 30 June 2023 (hover over to learn more)

Benefit within your super fundThis line shows your total account balance as of 30 June 2023.
Benefit on DeathThe figures in these lines are your account balance plus any insurance payments that would be paid out on your death, or total and permanent disablement.
Benefit on Total and Permanent DisablementThe figures in these lines are your account balance plus any insurance payments that would be paid out on your death, or total and permanent disablement.
Benefit on Total and Temporary DisablementThis is the monthly insurance payment you would receive to replace your income if you were injured or became ill and temporarily could not work.


Your super estimate at age 67

Estimated lump sum benefit at age 67This is a projection of how much you might have in your account by the time you reach retirement age, based on a series of assumptions that are outlined later in your member statement.

Estimated Total Annual Income in retirement if the above Lump Sum is drawn down progressively inclusive of the Age Pension

Estimated Average Annual income from Your Super

Estimated Average Annual Income from the Age Pension

Key terms:

  • Benefit – the account balance you have within your superannuation fund at a particular point in time
  • Age Pension – if your statement includes a projection, it shows the pension you may be eligible to receive from the government if your income and assets are within the limits

Account history

This page shows your account balance at the start and end of the financial year, plus amounts that have been added to your account and deductions that have been made.

Your opening account balance at 1 July 2022
Employer contributions
Net investment earnings
Insurance fees
Administration fees
Concessional contributions
Non-concessional contributions

Key terms:

  • Employer contributions – superannuation guarantee payments you have received from your employer. The total should match the total shown on your pay slips you receive from work.
  • Concessional contributions – SG payments from your employer plus pre-tax payments that have been made into your super account, such as salary sacrifice amounts
  • Non-concessional contributions – any after-tax payments you had made into your super account
  • Net investment earnings – the amount in dollar terms that the investments in your fund have contributed to your closing account balance. Over time, your superannuation fund is expected increase in value through investment earnings. However, your account may experience investment losses in any individual year. You will find more detail on your investment earnings in the next section of the member statement.
  • Insurance fees – the fees you pay for insurance policies you hold within your fund. Insurance policies can pay a lump sum if you die or are no longer able to work, or a replacement income if you are temporarily incapacitated.
  • Administration fees – fees you pay towards the general costs related to the administration of the fund

This page also includes a breakdown of how your balance is held.

Your balance is made up of (hover over to learn more)
Preserved amount $X.XXThis means $X.XX must be invested in superannuation until you reach age 60 and meet all other release criteria.
Restricted non-preserved amount $X.XX
Unrestricted non-preserved amount $X.XX

Key terms:

  • Preserved amount – if you are still accumulating superannuation, this amount will most likely be the same as your current account balance. As your statement will note, this money must remain invested in superannuation until you reach your ‘preservation age’ and meet other release criteria, such as having retired. Your preservation age depends on your date of birth.
    Date of birth Preservation age
    Before 1 July 1960 55
    1 July 1960 – 30 June 1961 56
    1 July 1961 – 30 June 1962 57
    1 July 1962 – 30 June 1963 58
    1 July 1963 – 30 June 1964 59
    1 July 1964 and after 60
  • Restricted non-preserved amount – you may have non-preserved super if you or your employer made voluntary contributions before July 1, 1999, or if you are aged 65 or over. If you are still employed by the company that opened your account, you may not access this amount until you leave work with that company.
  • Unrestricted non-preserved amount – an amount that you can withdraw at any time as a lump sum or via a pension. Usually, you will only have this type of benefit if you have retired or if you are aged 65 or over and have kept your money within your super fund.

See more on this in our fact sheet: When can you access your super fact sheet

Investments at a glance

Moving through your member statement, you will find a summary page of how the money you hold in your superannuation account is invested.

investments at a glanceAsset allocation
The graph shows how your super is invested across various asset classes. International shares may include hedged and unhedged funds.

Key terms:

  • Asset allocation and asset classes – the pie chart and percentage figures in the top part of this section show the proportion of your account balance that is held in each type of investment or asset class. You can read more about these assets in our explainer, Your super: What’s under the hood?
  • Investment choice – you may have selected one investment option or several, like in the example below. You can also contact us if you would like to speak with someone about which investments might best suit your circumstances.

Investment returns

At the top of page 6, you will find the percentage return that you received on your superannuation investments over the financial year (or since you joined the fund if you joined within the financial year). This is your estimated net earnings rate.

Remember, superannuation is a long-term investment. Over the few years prior to 2022/23, investment markets had been performing well and returns from superannuation were strong. However, there may be years in which your net earnings rate will be negative, which was generally the case for the 2021/22 financial year. This could even lead to your superannuation account balance falling in one year compared with the previous year.

The important thing is that investment markets move in cycles. Returns may vary from year to year but your account balance will generally grow over time through longer term earnings and investment growth, as well as contributions from your employer and own savings efforts. For more on volatility and investments markets, refer to our Q&A.

Portfolios Inception date  June Quarter 1 Year (p.a.) 5 Year (p.a.) 10 Year (p.a.) Since Inception (p.a.)

Key terms:

  • Portfolios – the name of the investment option
  • Inception date – the date the investment option was first started

Note that the percentage returns listed on this table are the returns for each of those investment options overall. The returns in this table are not the same as the returns you received on your investment. Past performance does not predict future returns.

Insurance benefits and beneficiaries

Your Death Benefit
Includes a basic insured amount of $X.XX
Your Total and Permanent Disablement Benefit
Include a basic insured amount of $X.XX
Your monthly Total and Temporary Disablement Benefit $X.XX

These details reflect your situation as at 30 June 2023 based on the information we have on file, are subject to the insurance fees/premiums being paid and may change accordingly.

Key terms:

  • Death benefit – the amount of the insurance that will be paid if you die
  • Total and permanent disablement benefit – the amount that will be paid out if you become disabled and are never expected to be able to work again
  • Total and temporary disablement benefit – the amount you will receive each month if you can’t work in the short-term due to ill health or injury
Name of beneficiary Relationship to you Percentage of benefit
J DOE SPOUSE 100.00%

The above beneficiary nomination is a non binding nomination.

Key terms:

  • Beneficiaries – these are the people who will receive payments from your insurance policy and your superannuation if you die
  • Binding nomination – if you have a valid binding nomination, the super fund trustees must pay out your benefits as you have instructed
  • Non binding nomination – A non-binding nomination expresses your preferences but the trustee decides who to pay your benefit to after reviewing all relevant information about your personal situation—it’s possible that your benefit will not be paid as you had nominated.

For more on these nominations, refer to our fact sheet on nominating your beneficiary/s.

Transaction history

In this section, you will find a list of all the transactions made on your super account for the entire 2022/23 financial year.


Your transaction history for the period 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2023.

Date Transaction description
29 -Jul-2022 Basic Income Protection Cover Insurance Fee
29 -Jul-2022 Basic TPD Insurance Fee
29 -Jul-2022 Basic Death Insurance Fee
29 -Jul-2022 Administration Fees and Costs
29 -Jul-2022 Administration Fees and Costs (%)
29 -Jul-2022 Super Guarantee Contribution
29 -Jul-2022 Company Other
29 -Jul-2022 Contribution tax

Key terms:

  • Super guarantee contribution – payments made into your superannuation account by your employer
  • Company other – this includes amounts such as salary sacrifice contributions paid into your fund via your employer
  • Contribution tax – generally 15 per cent of your contributions to super, paid to the Australian Taxation Office
  • Administration fees and costs – flat dollar fees charged for holding your account
  • Administration fees and costs (%) – fees that are calculated as a percentage of your super account balance
  • Rollover – your superannuation account balance that has been moved from another super fund
  • Withdrawals – amounts you have taken out of your super fund
  • Member post-tax contribution or Member lump sum post tax – any after-tax amounts you have added to your super fund. This is also where you’ll find personal contributions you have made where you intend to claim a tax deduction.

Fees and costs summary

This section will help you to work out how much you have paid in fees: directly from your account + deducted from your investment = total fees.

There is information about what fees are not included and why that’s the case, as well as additional explanations about fees and costs.

If you have any questions about your member statement, please get in touch. You will find the relevant contact details on your member statement.

All images and samples are for illustrative purposes only.

Issued by Total Risk Management Pty Ltd ABN 62 008 644 353, AFSL 238790 (TRM) as trustee of Russell Investments Master Trust ABN 89 384 753 567. Nationwide Super and Resource Super are Divisions of the Russell Investments Master Trust. The Product Disclosure Statement (‘PDS’), the Target Market Determinations and the Financial Services Guide can be obtained by phoning 1800 555 667 or by visiting russellinvestments.com.au or for Nationwide Super by phoning 1800 025 241 or visiting nationwidesuper.com.au. Any potential investor should consider the latest PDS in deciding whether to acquire, or to continue to hold, an investment in any Russell Investments product. Russell Investments Financial Solutions Pty Ltd ABN 84 010 799 041, AFSL 229850 (RIFS) is the provider of MyTracker and the financial product advice provided by GoalTracker Plus. General financial product advice is provided by RIFS or Link Advice Pty Ltd (Link Advice) ABN 36 105 811 836, AFSL 258145. Limited personal financial product advice is provided by Link Advice with the exception of GoalTracker Plus advice, which is provided by RIFS.

This communication provides general information only and has not been prepared having regard to your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before making an investment decision, you need to consider whether this information is appropriate to your objectives, financial situation and needs. If you'd like personal advice, we can refer you to the appropriate person. This information has been compiled from sources considered to be reliable but is not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. To the extent permitted by law, no liability is accepted for any loss or damage as a result of reliance on this information. This material does not constitute professional advice or opinion and is not intended to be used as the basis for making an investment decision. This work is copyright 2023. Apart from any use permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process, nor may any other exclusive right be exercised, without the permission of Russell Investments.