The value of downside protection

ESSSuper - 27 Mar 2020

Daniel Selioutine, Head of Investments, takes the opportunity to highlight the benefits of ESSSuper downside protection.

Stock Markets

The value of downside protection, pays off when you need it most

When it comes to investing your super, partnering with ESSSuper can help you chart a steady course to reach your financial destination.

We stick to a designated and reliable investment model that achieves competitive returns in growing markets, and, crucially, aims to better protect members in contracting markets.

ESSSuper's considered investment approach seeks to protect your investment against significant falls in the market

Since inception of the Accumulation Plan in 1997, downside protection has been a key investment principle guiding the fund’s investment approach. Downside protection means that our Investment Options are designed to meet their return objectives with less return volatility, helping to protect your superannuation balance when investment markets inevitably decline.

Historically this has meant that our Investment Options have been some of the better performing Options during market downturns when measured against industry peers.

Importantly, while our downside protection is likely to reduce your investment losses during the current Coronavirus related market volatility, it will not fully insulate your superannuation balance from losses. This is because downside protection must be balanced against investing in sufficient growth assets to achieve your Option’s return objective.

Achieving the return objective is crucial to ensuring you have sufficient superannuation when you retire

It is important to remember that superannuation is a long-term investment. Our investment objectives are set on the basis that a member will be invested through the market cycle, including its peaks and troughs.

Investment markets are currently in a trough or a down market

Switching Investment Options to lower risk Options may inadvertently lock-in investment losses and miss out on the potential for higher returns by being out of the market when it recovers. Over the longer term, our Investment Options have met their return objectives, helping our members to retire early or enjoy their retirement in the best financial position possible.

Our 3 core philosophies:

  1. Maintain the course
    Investments that over-perform quickly can spin out of control – even crash. We make choices that aspire to provide steady traction during the investment journey and aim to help members achieve a financially secure life in retirement.

  2. Keep to the Strategic foundation
    We make calculated and informed decisions, weighing up the risks and opportunities that target solid growth and maximum strength.

  3. Provide Absolute value
    Every expense is thoroughly considered with all investments efficiently managed. That's how we intend to keep precious dollars going back into your balance.

What we’re doing amidst COVID-19

In the event of economic events such as the COVID-19, plans have been in place to reduce market volatility and vulnerability.

We prefer to invest in assets that endeavour to provide the stability to generate long term results. This means the majority of your investment is likely to have a more stable foundation within tangible, real world assets.

We're here to help

Our aim is to help every member achieve a comfortable and financially secure life in retirement through investment options that meet their retirement objectives over the long-term. We have a range of foundational principles that we adhere to when it comes to making these decisions. To learn more about how our investment approach works, click here.

Before you make any change to your super investment strategy, we encourage you to speak to an ESSSuper financial adviser, to book an appointment please call us on 1300 650 161 or email us at

Investment returns cannot be guaranteed as investment markets can be volatile. As a consequence, returns can be positive or negative. Past investment performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.

Benefits in ESSSuper’s Accumulation Plan, Income Streams and Beneficiary Account products are not guaranteed or underwritten by the Victorian Government or ESSSuper, and ESSSuper does not come under the jurisdiction of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority.

Emergency Services Superannuation Board ABN 28 161 296 741 the Trustee of the Emergency Services Superannuation Scheme ABN 85 894 637 037 (ESSSuper). The information contained in this document is of a general nature only. It should not be considered as a substitute for reading the relevant ESSSuper Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) that contains detailed information about ESSSuper products, services and features. Before making a decision about an ESSSuper product, you should consider the appropriateness of the product to your personal objectives, financial situation and needs. It may also be beneficial to seek professional advice from a licensed financial planner or adviser. An ESSSuper PDS is available at or by calling 1300 650 161. Benefits in ESSSuper’s Accumulation Plan, Income Streams and Beneficiary Account products are not guaranteed or underwritten by the Victorian Government or ESSSuper, and ESSSuper does not come under the jurisdiction of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority.


  • Financial advice
  • General
  • Investments
  • Retirement
  • Superannuation
  • ESSSuper

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