Australia: Rest Super may become first pension fund to invest in crypto

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Australia is escalating its efforts to trigger institutional crypto investment in the country with Rest Super becoming the first superannuation fund to invest in cryptocurrencies.

It has $46.8 billion worth of assets under management and a client base of nearly 1.8 million members. Like 401k, Superannuation is a necessity and compulsory for all employees in Australia. The sector has a net worth of nearly $2.4 trillion and will be the first time delving into crypto market.

Last month, there were news of the state-owned crypto fund Queensland Investment Corporation [QIC] expanding exposure to crypto, however, the firm later stated that the reports were “incorrectly implied.”

As for Rest Super, its chief investment officer, Andrew Lill noted in the general meeting that the company views crypto as an “important part” of its portfolio moving forward. However, given the risk, it would also proceed “carefully and cautiously.”

He noted,

“It’s still a very volatile investment, so any allocation exposure we make to cryptocurrencies is likely to be part of our diversified portfolio as initially a fairly small allocation that may, over time, build.”

Lill recognized the potential of crypto and blockchain tech in providing a “stable source of value”, so much so that investors were choosing crypto as a hedge against fiat-based inflation. He added,

“I do think that, in an era of inflation, it could be a potentially good place to invest.”

Despite the optimism a spokesperson clarified that it is “certainly considering cryptocurrencies as a way to diversify our members’ retirement savings [but] will not be investing in the immediate future.”

The spokesperson added,

“We are currently conducting extensive research into the asset class prior to making any decisions. We are also considering the security and regulatory aspects of investing in this class.”

Australia has been pacing up efforts to catch the crypto train and as Rest Super thinks about including crypto, the exposure and adoption will grow.

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