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Where are ex-QF staff working now?

sudoer

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Up in the Hunter for a mid-week getaway, and a JQ 787 captain just took us through a tasting at a fairly well-known vineyard/cellar door.

Really felt for the guy, but it also seemed like wine is his second love after flying. Of the six vineyards we've visited so far, the service he provided and knowledge of the product was head and shoulders above the others.
 

Helohound

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One of the fantastic cabin crew we had on the Great Southern Land Flight last Saturday told us he had been working for the ATO. He also said there were over 2,000 staff EOIs to be on the flight and it was pretty much out of a hat that decided who would get the gig. So not only luck played a part to get a seat, but luck as well to be working.
 

BD1959

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That's a useful datapoint! Assuming 'just' means in October & sounds as if not received the cash yet.

Q has been very quiet about how the redundancy processing is going. Back in June Q said that the 6,000 would all be processed before Spetmeber 30th but there has been no update since. As this requires around $600m to be actually paid out - it will come close to totally exhausting all Q's remaining cash left from the $550m unsecured bond issue & $1.36bn institutional share issue (26.6.20).

As over June 30th (prior to the unsecured bond issue some weeks later) they had less than $300m Net Tangible Assets despite getting in the $1,360m from the share issue.
Cabin Crew VR EOI closed back in August. No decision has been made yet in regards to exit dates and they are over subscribed. Other areas have already had VR approved and those employees have left the company (sad to see a number of amazing ground staff and first hosts leave).
I heard the redundancy decision had been held up due to the legal challenge by the ex Sunstate? staff. The courts heard the case in September and believe the decision is to be handed down in December.

All very interesting - moreso since these all suggest that on top of the stress for some of making that leap-of-faith, it may actually be stalled for some pending decisions both internal or external to Qantas. My allusion to "recent" was based on a conversation where she outlined that she had taken a long time to decide - speaking with various HR departments etc - before finally making the decision herself.

I'm pretty certain it has gone through for her (although I'd have no idea on, and would not ask, about the financial settlement) as she recently had an issue with travel which she said would have been easier to resolve if she was "still staff".

Regards,

BD
 
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milehighclub

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I'm pretty certain it has gone through for her (although I'd have no idea on, and would not ask, about the financial settlement) as she recently had an issue with travel which she said would have been easier to resolve if she was "still staff".

As of today, 3500 of 6000 required to leave have left the business, but none of those include cabin crew at this stage. The company said, as recent as yesterday, that the VR process will not continue for cabin crew until the ruling is made, and then the conversations go from there, depending on the ruling.
 

trooper

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Quite a few pilots came from the RAAF so many are returning, if only as reservists

Navy too. A friend who was a QF FO was very pleased to get some "Full Time service". I think he sees his airline career as over though.
 

Melburnian1

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As of today, 3500 of 6000 required to leave have left the business, but none of those include cabin crew at this stage. The company said, as recent as yesterday, that the VR process will not continue for cabin crew until the ruling is made, and then the conversations go from there, depending on the ruling.

Must be difficult for some to have their (financial) lives 'placed on hold' longer than they'd have expected.
 

RAM

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Must be difficult for some to have their (financial) lives 'placed on hold' longer than they'd have expected.
Some unscrupulous companies have been known to string it out in the hope that staff who would've been made redundant end up resigning & taking up a full time job elsewhere on the basis of 'a bird in the hand...'

Generally, with still around 270,000 families deferring all mortgage payments, now that JobKeeper has dropped from $750/week to $550/week - the urgency will have risen for many.

Given Q's cash constraints...
 

Melburnian1

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...Given Q's cash constraints...

...on which you have extensively written.

As in all sectors though, the financial position of QF staff on JobKeeper will markedly vary: some will have significant savings and no debt, 'good' or 'bad' while others will lack much in savings and have mortgage debts, with a third group having over-extended themselves in the understandable belief that they pretty much had a job for life.
 

Melburnian1

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To 11 October 2020 under the Federal Government's very good superannuation early release plan (allowing a withdrawal of up to $10000 in 2019-20 and the same in 2020-21), APRA figures show that the Qantas superannuation fund had paid out 7722 initial applications and 4749 repeat ones for a total of $118.3 million. This averaged $9464 per payout, a high figure given that from memory the median payment made has been around $7700 across all super funds.

This doesn't tell us the occupations of those requesting this money, nor their ages or how long they have been employed by QF for - some will still be 'on the books', others will have left for different pastures long ago - but even though the super fund will have more members than the pre-COVID-19 QF staff complement, it seems a high number of withdrawals.
 

GSP

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Does anybody have an insight on what the redundancy entitlements are? And is it different for Voluntary v Forced (I'd assume so). Wonder how it compares to state government minimum entitlements (for those under the high salary threshold).
 

Hvr

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Does anybody have an insight on what the redundancy entitlements are?


They would probably vary between EBA/CA. The age of the employee also affects taxation of payments. In all cases it behoves the employee to get specialist financial advice to take their circumstances into account.
 

GSP

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Yeah I understand the taxation is universal (i.e years of service determines the tax free component), and over 45 gives another week, but wondering what the equation for the calculation. Or is there different EBA's potentially by job type?
 

milehighclub

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Cabin crew don't have a VR policy in their EBA but QF has always used the CR formula in the EBA for VR payments. It could be different, but no one would take a less generous VR payment when the CR policy is better and probably why they have always done it that way. Each department has different VR and CR so I can't speak to other areas within QF.
 

jb747

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For the pilot group, there is a CR policy written into the EBA. The VR that has been offered is well under that, and is also less than what was offered in 2014 when the 767 was retired and the 747 wound back. From what I gather, the VR was offered, and taken up in the numbers they wanted, but months later it still has not been enacted.
 

flyer89

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From what I gather, the VR was offered, and taken up in the numbers they wanted, but months later it still has not been enacted

Perhaps for the same reason people are finding it difficult to get refunds?
 
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The Project just had a story on some Qantas A380 pilots who are now carrying passengers on.. busses in Sydney! Was quite interesting and emotional. Should be able to catch it on 10play shortly.
 

Ari Gold

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RAM

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To 11 October 2020 under the Federal Government's very good superannuation early release plan (allowing a withdrawal of up to $10000 in 2019-20 and the same in 2020-21), APRA figures show that the Qantas superannuation fund had paid out 7722 initial applications and 4749 repeat ones for a total of $118.3 million. This averaged $9464 per payout, a high figure given that from memory the median payment made has been around $7700 across all super funds.

This doesn't tell us the occupations of those requesting this money, nor their ages or how long they have been employed by QF for - some will still be 'on the books', others will have left for different pastures long ago - but even though the super fund will have more members than the pre-COVID-19 QF staff complement, it seems a high number of withdrawals.
No, not to be the contrarian....

The theory of letting people in need access their super is good but the method chosen is probably the worst of all worlds - and likely deliberately so.

Very early on in CV despite contacting various Federal MPs who I've dealt with in the past - not one responded other than with a 'thank you' note. This was before the scheme was announced btw.

Given the constant message on mandatory superannuation:
  • Crucial for people to save for their retirement (or permanent incapacity)
  • Most tax-effective vehicle for such savings (debateable)
  • Safe (well regulated & monitored (ha!) - thanks to ASIC [oops!] Fox in charge of the hen house?)
  • Long term best savings vehicle (highest after tax returns)
Also consider that the RBA is & has been pumping cash into the system by buying up Commonwealth Govt Loans (CGLs) otherwise known as Govt bonds.

Why instead of people having to withdraw up to $10,000 from their super pre & post 30 June 2020 (after 15% contributions tax) and if they wish to replace at a later date to get their balance up they will again pay 15% contributions tax - so a net 30% tax rate all up which places them in an equivalent position to someone earning > %160,000 (avg tax rate paid not marginal rate) - did the Fed Govt NOT allow people to borrow from their own super account a maximium of whichever is the lower amount $10,000 or 85% of their current balance at the time of request.

The interest rate charged would be paid into their super account (so still a growing balance) at the RBA short term rate + 0.25%, so 0.50% per annum. If people's financial situation gets so bad then there is no difference for them vs the scheme the Fed Govt has gone with. Otherwise vs the additional 15% contributions tax they will have to pay if they can rebuild their balance down the track - they can take 30 yrs to repay the money and NOT be worse off vs what the Federal Govt actually did. Meanwhile as they repay their borrowing (forced savings) it is earning money at a much greater rate than the interest charged - so they're doubly better off. Only worse if Super funds underperformed at below 0.50% per annum over the long term (24+ years).

There is no risk for the Fed Govt.
There is no risk for the Super fund provider.
There is less risk & cost for the person 'borrowing' from their account.

One shadow-minister I spoke with argued very strongly against my idea. Saying this was unfair for Industry Funds as they'd have to come up with the cash somehow, and would incur costs selling the assets. I pointed out that all super funds actually game the system & some actually allegedly pocket this in a little sleight of hand. Perhaps I could provide him with some funds to have a look at to see exactly what goes on. Silence.

How?

There is a buy/sell spread on the units each one of you (who is working) buy each period with your compulsory super contributions. However the period may be only annual - shockingly. Some businesses wait until late June to put the money into the super funds their employees are in - instead of putting it in every pay period. Quite often property developers do this per project. Perhaps an Australian airline does this - worth asking the question for any employee (have a look at your record of contributions by calling the trustee and asking for a dated list of how much & what unit prices the units were issued at for the last financial year. Can be very revealing. For example, when I've suggested this to people in the past their immediate response was that they check their pay slips and they show the deduction.

That the money has been deducted from your wage/salary does not mean it has been paid to your super fund to buy units -and never has!

ASIDE - Now why after over 60 years of superannuation (first funds for workers NOT senior executives etc were the Seafarers Fund & Stevedoring Employees Retirement Fund SERF). Effectively the first industry funds before the term was thought up in the 1980s. Many people on both sides (unions & employers) were murdered in the battle to get these funds set up - may be a 'Underbelly' series on it one day. Amazing how easily someone can fall into an empty hold & break their neck, or slip off a gang plank and get crushed between a coal carrier & the wharf. Even if they'd never set foot on a docked ship in their life previously but worked on Collins St.

Finally a delivery of flowers to the MD of a major shipping line's home addressed to his wife & 3 lovely daughters saw the war end & the negotiations begin.

Meanwhile back at the ranch....

So how do some funds 'play the float' as it is known?

There are always people retiring - which requires you to realise all your 'Super Fund' holdings even if you elect to go into a pension scheme with the same fund provider. So the provider (such as an Industry fund or corporate) 'sells' your units in the Super fund at the redemption price (a margin below the market value including all potential tax liability or Net Tangible Asset price) and either buys units in the pension fund or after some days delay (where they earn the interest) pay you the money. If it buys units in a pension product it does so at a margin ABOVE the Net Tangible Asset price. So the find provider has generated a double margin overall.

However, it gets better (for the fund provider) as every week there is money flowing into it from peoples' SGC contributions - which buy units at issue price (margin above NTA) in the very same fund that you just paid a margin to redeem from. The fund has not had to sell nor buy any assets - so has not cystallised any tax liabilities nor had any transaction costs to provide the assets.

For the pension fund > 94% of cases (other than the few days after 30 June) does it require to purchase assets as its regular pension payments from the fund are covered by the inflows. So again it is earning a double margin for nothing - and both customers are worse off.

So perhaps now you can understand why NOBODY would even acknowledge (in writing that is) what I suggested despite there being no negatives to it for the community just a significant benefit however it would have eliminated a very nice little (not so little) benefit for the fund providers.

Some fund providers may use this to offset 'fees' others create some smoke & mirrors' methods to abide by the letter but not the spirit of the law.

Some fund providers could have internal service companies set up to 'manage' the cash flow transactions on their behalf, perhaps calling them XYZ Finance & Investments. Perhaps they generated $$ millions in profits per annum. Odd though how nobody ever hears about them is it not? Perhaps some even pay salaries etc to people who receive salaries from the fund provider under another company name.

So much for a level playing field, does make you wonder what the definition of 'safe' really means when it comes to super - or is it 'shades of grey'?

Too much that the public never finds out about & the authorities don't want to know....
 
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