BNZ cuts KiwiSaver fees

BNZ has cut the fees it charges across its KiwiSaver funds and is shifting to an passive approach for international assets.

Chief customer officer Paul Carter said: “The onus is on financial institutions to do everything we can to remove obstacles, to make things simpler, and give people better tools and advice. That’s why we’re making major changes to our KiwiSaver offering."

From May 1, BNZ will remove the $1.95 monthly member fee and reduce management fees from up to 1.1% a year to a maximum of 0.58%.

“These changes remove important barriers to choosing the best fund for a customer’s needs, with the moderate, balanced, and growth funds now all on the same low fee. By this action, we’re removing fees as a consideration when deciding what fund to go into,”  he said.

Under the new structure, a person with $20,000 invested in the BNZ Growth fund would have their fees more than halved, from $243 to $116.

“We’ve re-written all of our disclosure documents and communications in plain English," Carter said.

"We’re rolling out new tools for our bankers to help them have better conversations with customers and help them pick the right fund for their needs. We’re also putting more tools in the hands of customers, with calculators to help compare the different funds and returns over time."

BNZ is also changing the way the underlying investments are managed, shifting to an index management approach for international assets, while keeping the actively managed approach for Australasian investments.