Book Review: Keating’s & Kelty Super Legacy

Read­ing time: 2 mins

Enock Chiyangwa gives a synopsis of the recently launched book by, Mary Easson, a former politician and respected executive in the superannuation industry.

 About the Author

Mary Eas­son, active for over four decades in the Vic­to­ria, Queens­land and NSW of the ALP, knew well all of the lead­ing archi­tects of the Australia’s mod­ern super­an­nu­a­tion sys­tem. Serv­ing as an MP in Paul Keating’s gov­ern­ment she saw the vital impor­tance of the lead­er­ship trans­lat­ing into sol­id pol­i­cy for the pub­lic good.

Post pol­i­tics, Mary served on the board of Australia’s largest insur­ance com­pa­ny, chair­ing its Risk man­age­ment and Audit com­mit­tee. Through her busi­ness Pro­bity Inter­na­tion­al she has advised list­ed and unlist­ed inter­na­tion­al and Aus­tralian com­pa­nies. She grad­u­at­ed with a Mas­ter of Phi­los­o­phy from the school of busi­ness at the Uni­ver­si­ty of NSW. She was Chair of the Advi­so­ry Board of the Insti­tute for Research into Retire­ment Pol­i­cy and Man­age­ment, the Syd­ney Busi­ness School.


Mary Eas­son vivid­ly chron­i­cles the con­cep­tion and evo­lu­tion of the Super­an­nu­a­tion sys­tem in Aus­tralia. High­light­ing the sig­nif­i­cance of two char­ac­ters, Keat­ing and Kel­ty, Mary unrav­els the behind the scenes shenani­gans that laid the foun­da­tion to what is now a world renowned retire­ment income stream phe­nom­e­non.

Hon Peter Collins AM QC, Chair, Indus­try Super Aus­tralia apt­ly states the fol­low­ing about this book, ‘‘Uni­ver­sal super­an­nu­a­tion for all work­ing Aus­tralians has tak­en this nation from the mid­dle order to be the envy of the world in just 25 years. Dri­ven by then Trea­sur­er Paul Keat­ing and ACTU Sec­re­tary Bill Kel­ty, com­pul­so­ry super now stands as one of the great inno­va­tions since Fed­er­a­tion. Yet most Aus­tralians know lit­tle about the ori­gins of what has become a dis­tin­guish­ing nation­al emblem. This book does much to tell that proud sto­ry.”

Let’s take a look inside

Con­tents include Chap­ters on

  • Sig­nif­i­cance of the Accord for Super­an­nu­a­tion
  • The Build­ing Indus­try Break­through
  • Leg­is­lat­ing for Per­ma­nen­cy
  • Trou­bles Ahead 
  • Appen­dices cov­er­ing Major Super­an­nu­a­tion Funds, Indus­tri­al Rela­tions, and Relat­ed Changes over 40 years
  • Sig­nif­i­cant Asset Con­sul­tants;
  • Major Super­an­nu­a­tion Indus­try Asso­ci­a­tions; 
  • Super­an­nu­a­tion Jar­gon Made Easy;
  • Biogra­phies of Key Per­sons Plus Ref­er­ences & an Index

Notable quotes

Once I go in to bat for you, I don’t care what these peo­ple say,”-former Trea­sure & Prime Min­is­ter Paul Keat­ing.

 “…we’ve got the chance in his­to­ry. This is your great chance. This is the night you’ll remem­ber. This is the night that we are going to cre­ate nation­al super­an­nu­a­tion for everybody.”-Bill Kel­ty, ACTU

Take­away for the Actu­ary

If you want to know how the “Aus­tralian Super Jour­ney” began then this book will sure­ly quench your thirst for knowl­edge. After read­ing this time­less piece you can expect to be more enriched in your under­stand­ing of how the super­an­nu­a­tion sys­tem that has become a nation­al emblem was intri­cate­ly craft­ed into exis­tence.  

You can buy Mary’s book here.

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About the author

Enock Chiyangwa

Enock is an analyst within the Group Life Policy team at MLC Life Insurance focusing on internal process improvement, risk mitigation and enhancing customer experience. Also he is part of the Actuaries Digital editorial team. He is passionate about drawing strategic insights from big data and product innovation.

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