Unlisted assets play an important part of your super, contributing to diversification by lowering your exposure to any one type of investment or overly similar asset class.


You may have heard about unlisted assets in super coming up as a topic of late, as new standards for the valuation of these investments came into effect on 1 January 2023 and are progressively being implemented. More on the changing regulations and what these may mean for your super below.


Are you across the difference between listed and unlisted assets, and the resulting returns that could mean a poor return versus a good one?


With $3.5 trillion now in Australia’s super system, there’s a big reason to care. Let’s draw a rough parallel. Most of us understand how tougher markets are impacting the value of our homes. But what does these market conditions mean for the value of the investments held in your super?


Here’s what you need to know about unlisted assets in your super fund. 



The unlisted asset valuation challenge


Due to the practices of some other super funds, there has been an increasing focus on how often unlisted assets are being valued. This could lead to biased results because the owners of those assets could judge the value too generously.


How often unlisted assets are valued to determine what they are worth, often lags listed assets. This means if your super fund has invested in a significant amount of unlisted assets, it may be harder to know their true value and therefore, your real super balance.


Also, members have no information about whether their fund has revalued these unlisted assets, what the outcomes of any revaluation has been, and whether those valuations are consistent with other funds. 


Unlisted asset valuation becomes an even bigger issue during tougher market conditions, which could see a dent in your super balance when your fund’s annual report is released. This is why it’s crucial to understand the scale of unlisted assets in your super fund. 


While improvements to unlisted valuations won’t happen overnight, unlisted markets will start to value more appropriately and become more consistent.


CFS Chief Investment Officer, Jonathan Armitage, said that “unlisted assets absolutely have a place in investment portfolios, provided they can be independently valued at least quarterly so that members, and financial advisers, can make informed decisions about the investment options that underpin their retirement”. 

What’s the difference between listed and unlisted assets?

We explain the asset classes in further detail, as well as the impact of valuation timing on your super’s performance.


You are able to view the value and weighting of every holding in each CFS fund investment option.

What if my super fund is holding a significant amount of unlisted assets?

It may be harder to know their true value and therefore, your real super balance.

How can I better understand portfolio holdings disclosure?

Our CFS portfolio holdings disclosure user guide can help you understand how the information is disclosed.

Where can I see my super fund’s unlisted holdings?


Under the Portfolio Holdings Disclosure regime, super funds must disclose information about the identity, value and weightings of its investments and portfolio composition. The information must be published on the fund’s website and updated twice a year.



How does CFS value unlisted assets?


We use external professional investment managers to value unlisted assets included in our investment options. We value unlisted infrastructure assets on a quarterly basis, sourced from audited independent valuations of the underlying assets which are revalued on a rotating quarterly and semi-annual basis.


Unlisted property assets are valued based on monthly valuations provided by the investment manager. Valuations of the underlying properties are conducted on rolling basis at least semi-annually with approximately 50% quarterly.  


CFS provides value and weighting of every holding in each fund investment option



How much does CFS invest in unlisted assets versus other funds?


Currently, CFS has 9% of unlisted assets in our default option, FirstChoice Employer Super Lifestage.


Some large super funds are holding as much as 30%, even 40%, in unlisted assets such as property, infrastructure, private equity and private credit.


Importantly, as market conditions change – both from an economic and regulatory perspective – super funds must assess their unlisted asset holdings. CFS is constantly monitoring and assessing whether we hold an appropriate balance – and this is across all asset classes.

What's next?


Super fund performance and unlisted assets

Unlisted and listed investments in various super funds primary drive the differences in the returns. 


Market volatility: an overview

Read more about market volatility in financial markets. 


Find an adviser

We recommend speaking to an adviser to help you identify and achieve your financial goals.

Unleash in ways you never thought possible

Get in touch

Get in touch with us online or call us

18 - 20 December 8.30am to 5pm AEST

21 - 22 December, 9am to 3pm AEST

27 - 29 December, 9am to 3pm AEST

2 - 5 January, 8.30am to 5pm AEST

Find a financial adviser

Use our tool to find professional financial advice,

local to you.





Download mobile app

Track your balance and see your 

transactions history from anywhere.





Avanteos Investments Limited ABN 20 096 259 979, AFSL 245531 (AIL) is the trustee of the Colonial First State FirstChoice Superannuation Trust ABN 26 458 298 557 and issuer of FirstChoice range of super and pension products. Colonial First State Investments Limited ABN 98 002 348 352, AFSL 232468 (CFSIL) is the responsible entity and issuer of products made available under FirstChoice Investments and FirstChoice Wholesale Investments.


Information on this webpage is provided by AIL and CFSIL. It may include general advice but does not consider your individual objectives, financial situation, needs or tax circumstances. You can find the target market determinations (TMD) for our financial products at  https://www.cfs.com.au/tmd which include a description of who a financial product might suit. You should read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Financial Services Guide (FSG) carefully, assess whether the information is appropriate for you, and consider talking to a financial adviser before making an investment decision. You can get the PDS and FSG at www.cfs.com.au or by calling us on 13 13 36.