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Thursday, 5 December 2002
Page: 7319


Senator SHERRY (5:26 PM) —I am still of the mind, on behalf of the Labor Party, to support the Democrat amendment after listening to the contributions. Senator Murray raised a very good point in that last contribution he made. It is not a dissimilar situation to that of financial lump sums that are being split in a divorce circumstance, where the parties are going to make decisions about the split of the superannuation and enter into financial arrangements that will impact over a very long period of time. The origin of the financial instruments is obviously very different, but the decision to enter into an agreement in respect of what could be a very substantial lump sum of money and converting it into some sort of annuity is not a dissimilar situation. I think Senator Murray is quite right to point out that financial advice is required there. Given the complexity of superannuation, I would argue that a very significant number of people in our community would just not have the required level of financial literacy to make an informed choice in those circumstances and advice would be necessary.