ASIC and APRA welcome law reform on superannuation regulator roles

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The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) have jointly welcomed the proposed legislative reforms increasing the role of ASIC in superannuation. In response to recommendations from the Financial Services Royal Commission (FSRC), on 31 January the Treasurer released exposure draft legislation for consultation. The draft legislation introduces important reforms... Read more continue reading

Cashing in on payments!

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Payments are a central part of everyday life but the regulations that govern them are complex. If Australia is to be a leader in the fintech space, it’s time for a holistic review of our regulatory framework for payments. Digital payments are on the rise Every purchase or sale we make requires some form of... Read more continue reading

Advisers now have help to avoid getting caught out by the new FASEA Code

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The FASEA Code of Ethics Standard is now in force as of 1 January 2020, and the challenge for advisers is not just to pass the exam but also to make the necessary changes to their business practices. According to leading research house Lonsec, the Code now requires advisers to demonstrate that they are acting... Read more continue reading

ASIC’s draft DDO guidelines could place significant burden on product issuers and distributors

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ASIC’s draft guidance on product Design and Distribution Obligations (DDO) entails ‘significant’ change regarding arrangements between financial product issuers and distributors, according to Harry New, partner in the financial services practice at Hall & Wilcox Lawyers. While ASIC’s ‘principles-based approach’ to the DDO will be welcomed by the financial services industry, Mr New says the... Read more continue reading

ASIC review of 30 June 2019 financial reports

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ASIC has announced the results from its review of the 30 June 2019 full-year financial reports of 200 entities. Arising from the review, ASIC has made inquiries of 47 entities on 80 matters. The largest number of inquiries continue to relate to impairment of non-financial assets and inappropriate accounting treatments. Directors and auditors should continue... Read more continue reading

AMP to pay $5.175 million penalty for failing to prevent insurance churn by its financial planners

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The Federal Court has ordered AMP to pay a $5.175 million penalty after the court found AMP failed to take reasonable steps to ensure its financial planners complied with the best interests duty and related obligations under the Corporations Act. In this case, ASIC alleged that a number of AMP’s financial planners engaged in ‘rewriting... Read more continue reading

FPA partners with Deakin University

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The Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) has announced a ground-breaking partnership with Deakin Business School, which will allow financial planners to combine a Master of Financial Planning degree with the CFP® Certification Program. FPA Chief Executive Officer Dante De Gori said the move would allow financial planners to combine their study requirements into one single... Read more continue reading

ASIC encourages fair and effective insurance claims handling for people affected by the bushfires

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ASIC is committed to helping Australians affected by the devastating bushfires to rebuild their lives. ASIC Deputy Chair Daniel Crennan QC said that ‘ASIC is working with insurers and other key stakeholders to ensure that claims are handled efficiently and fairly. We expect those involved in handling these insurance claims to act with the utmost... Read more continue reading

ASIC updates responsible lending guidance

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ASIC has published updated guidance on the responsible lending obligations that are contained in the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2019 (the National Credit Act). Following an extensive consultation, ASIC has updated Regulatory Guide 209 (RG 209) to provide greater clarity and support to lenders and brokers in meeting their obligations. Importantly, ASIC has maintained principles-based... Read more continue reading

ASIC reports on compliance with financial advice fee disclosure obligations

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A new report about fee disclosure obligations released by ASIC has found that consumers receiving financial advice could be at risk of receiving wrong information about advice fees, or in some cases, being charged fees after ongoing fee arrangements have terminated. Report 636 Compliance with the fee disclosure statement and renewal notice obligations (REP 636), reports on ASIC’s... Read more continue reading