Industry super fund members may save over $80,000 more than those in retail funds for retirement because of the lower fees and sales commissions, according to a new study.

The modelling by SuperRatings based on existing fee levels and projections over 40 years suggests that members of industry super funds could be 20 per cent better off than their retail fund counterparts, even if investments returns are the same.

Industry Super Network (ISN), a lobbying organisation representing industry super funds which commissioned the study, is asking the government to abolish sales commissions on super contributions, in a submission to the Henry Review on Australia’s Future Tax System.

ISN is making the submission jointly with the Australian Institute of Superannuation trustees, which represents not-for-profit super funds.

That would improve the adequacy of retirement savings even without increasing contribution levels, ISN said in a statement on Monday.

“The dramatic compounding effect of the difference in fees over time means it is critically important for super fund members to keep an eye on the cost of their fund, especially fees and commissions paid from their super account,” ISN executive manager David Whiteley said.

SuperRatings, which conducts research on the superannuation industry, reviewed 34 funds covering eight million members for the survey.

The model was based on the average fees of 17 industry funds and 17 retail master trusts.

ISN said in the statement that industry funds returned $7.10 for each $1 of fees, compared with retail funds which returned $2.40 per $1 of fees.