ASIC backflips on new super transparency regulations

ASIC will appoint an external expert to review super costs and fees.

ASIC backflips on new super transparency regulations

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has responded to feedback from the superannuation industry and will appoint an external expert to review fee transparency for super and managed investment schemes.

The announcement comes after months of grumblings from industry super and other independent experts that the watchdog’s plan to police how super funds were investing money would unfairly favour retail and for-profit funds.

ASIC stated that the implementation of the industry regulator’s new fee reporting system, known as RG 97, would treat all funds the same way, but this announcement may signal that there was evidence to suggest otherwise.

The watchdog is hoping that improving the transparency of super fund fees and costs and encouraging further disclosure of investments will benefit consumers.

According to ASIC, funds have already been investing in improving fee disclosure to ensure that they are meeting best practice procedures.

The confusion around how super funds work has been baffling consumers for years. ASIC hopes to shed some light on how super money is invested as well as on funds’ fees and costs.

ASIC reported: “fees and costs are not the only significant consideration for consumers, as some higher cost investments may produce higher net returns in the long term.

“ASIC will appoint an external expert to consider the RG 97 reforms and their impact, liaise with industry and produce any necessary recommendations about how better transparency and comparability of fees and costs may be achieved.

“ASIC's oversight of PDS and periodic disclosure will maintain its current facilitative compliance approach, focusing on the key aim of ensuring that consumers are not misled.”

The expert review is currently underway and the recommendation process should be concluded early next year.


Are you surprised by this announcement?



    To make a comment, please register or login
    2nd Nov 2017
    The idea of treating all funds equally may have raised red flags. It would be very interesting to find out why retail funds are often twice or three times more expensive than industry funds.

    I'm a great believer in transparency. But it has to be for all the funds.
    2nd Nov 2017
    I would find it hard to believe that retail funds can provide any good reason for their charges. If this is done properly the banks will be in trouble again. :)
    Waiting to retire at 70
    2nd Nov 2017

    1. a cursory glance at the financial industry's political donations, or

    2. a review of the lobbyist register (to see which ex-pollies are working for industry members), or

    3. a look at the actions of the Minister for Revenue and Financial Services in pushing the one-sided way not-for-profit or worker-based Superannuation funds have to report their fees and choose their directors,

    then we might just understand the reason the LNP continues to support the exploitation of workers and their unions.

    Look at both Kelly O'Dwyer and Michaelia cRash, and judge them by their action. Active members of turnBULL's "big end of town" squad". Rah, rah ...

    Ask them both to explain:

    1. Why they want people to put off or abandon retirement and work until you can donate their organs whilst,

    2. Employers are NOT obliged to pay the Superannuation Guarantee if you work past the age of 75?

    Fair and equitable?

    Or exploitative and WRONG.

    cRash and o'Myer don't have to worry though. They are getting an 18% superannuation guarantee contributions from taxpayers, whilst ours was frozen at 9.5% by Smokin' Joe in 2014 and will remain frozen until 2022/2024 financial year, if they don't delay it further.
    2nd Nov 2017
    I wish someone would crackdown on the numerous organisations who do not submit the super they are required to by law. Too many don’t, especially in retail and hospitality. Employees are too scared to make a fuss in case they lose their jobs. The ATO do not have the resources to follow up complaints and make businesses comply. Workers are missing out.
    2nd Nov 2017
    Sunday's good point , I know people that have been ripped off and even when they do dob them in they never see a cent.
    2nd Nov 2017
    Not just industry members. How about Baird going back to the bank I'd like to see how much the bankers made from privatisation fees and charges. Or Robb and his little sign secret deals thing.

    Everything bar national security should be transparent and judging by recent sales to China even National security doesn't figure high on the priority list for the money grubbers in control now.
    Waiting to retire at 70
    2nd Nov 2017

    Talking about "Baird".

    I hear he is looking for a 'guernsey' to get back into parliament but at a federal level this time. Like his dad did.

    Maybe he's up for one of the NAB redundancies announced today.

    I also hear that he'd like to run for pre-selection in Tony Abbott's seat of Warringah; it overlaps his previous seat of Manly in the state parliament. Now I'll PAY HIM MONEY TO DO THAT.
    3rd Nov 2017
    You sure will pay for it. Already through excessive profit taking by private electricity providers, privatised health and excessive education costs.

    Who knows what money making public asset they plan to sell next.

    Abbott is a clown but I doubt he's a carpetbagger.
    Waiting to retire at 70
    4th Nov 2017

    Yeah you're undoubtedly right on Baird. Just a little mischief maybe on my part.

    What's next on public asset sell off? Try these:

    1. Gladys refused to grant public park status for Wendy Whiteley's Secret Garden at Lavender Bay (
    Preferring to only allow for a lease - long or short makes no difference because a lease can be broken whereas public park sale requires legislation.
    2. Gladys and her 'forgetful' Member for North Shore indicated that funds were available for development of the Sydney Harbour Highline SHHL ( However they changed their mind when their plans for the sale of each of Sydney Trains' rail lines could include the land identified for the highline as part of the T1 North Shore Line. Now Gladys can't find the money promised for funding SHHL.

    Then we find out our 'forgetful' local member was previously an employer of the Property Council of Australia. A keen supporter of the work of the PCA is Multiplex, who own Luna Park and have a 'not for public review'/SECRET agreement with Gladys regarding the use of Luna Park - why can't we see this? Milsons Point has the 4th highest apartment density in Sydney and cannot afford to have a series of 11 storey apartment blocks from Luna Park around Lavender Bay. But that seems to be the NEXT asset to be given by this government to developers. A plague on their house.
    2nd Nov 2017
    And do the libs care about the ordinary joe and how he will live if and when he retires not in your life as long as these suckers take us for a ride they are happy gee how happy i feel to have these people looking after our country I will now go and beat myself up I obviously deserve it
    2nd Nov 2017
    This Federal government seems to only attack one type of person that is workers and the elderly what about their mates that run the country and were not even elected to do the job, wake up Australia you are being conned.
    2nd Nov 2017
    is there bias against industry funds in ASIC? it seems the government is biased against industry super and wants to wrest funds away so that its cronies can profit as usual. It would be good to have an independent expert redress any bias.

    2nd Nov 2017
    How hard is it to come up with a simple straightforward reporting structure
    For this the useless public servants need to hire consultants ?
    3rd Nov 2017
    With government endeavouring to force indedpendent directors, you can understand why our corporations are underperforming. ie BHP, CCL, Origin, Telstra, CBA for a few. All have lost value and super has suffered.
    Unfortunately the feds are only interested in blue collar "crime" and give lip service to white collar crime.

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