Push for greater ASIC powers

The government is considering a move which would see ASIC granted the powers to remove financial products.

Push for greater ASIC powers

The government is considering a move which would see the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) granted the power to intervene and remove financial products from the market, as well as being able to add consumer warnings, alter marketing documents and impose distribution restrictions.

Leading the charge for change and to restore confidence is the new Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg. First on his list of to-dos is to launch a public financial advisor register by the end of March, with the aim of giving people more confidence to seek financial advice.

By giving ASIC more powers to stop the sale and promotion of failed or fraudulent products, it should remove at least some of the concern of consumers that financial advisors were only out to make money for themselves. However, the move is likely to face opposition from the large product providers, who’s products are sold through a network of planners, with noises being made that it would result in less product innovation and cause market uncertainty.

Informing the proposed move is the Murray Inquiry’s recommendation that ASIC be given such powers. The Assistant Treasurer, who took on the role in December, is also reviewing the recommendations put forward by the bipartisan parliamentary joint committee on the ethics, professionalism and training of financial planners. This report, which was released on 19 December, would have greatly affect the big four banks’ financial planning services and AMP.

With 40 ASIC staff currently working on producing the register, the Assistant Treasurer is well on his way to delivering his first promise, however, it is expected that the register will not give details of planners’ qualification when launched, raising the question of whether the register is actually worth anything.

Read more at TheAge.com.au

Do you think more powers granted to ASIC would reduce the number of rogue planners and products on the market? Would a register of financial planners give you more confidence to seek advice? If not, what measures would help restore faith in the financial planning sector?


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    3rd Feb 2015
    ASIC is one of Australia's toothless tigers. A whole pile of public servants who write letters back to people to fob them off rather than get on the phone to crooked businesses and warn them and thereafter prosecute. And you wonder why we have so much white collar crime and rogue business behaviour?
    3rd Feb 2015
    Strewrh !! Are they actually going to be allowed to do Something ??

    3rd Feb 2015
    Agree with you mick…. they are given very little budget or powers to do much at all.

    It is a reflection of a despicable system whereby all financial advice and planners reaches all the way back to the (dirty) big banks which are ALL (43% - 49%) owned in relatively the same order by (1x UK & 3x USA) FOREIGN entities. The system was put in place by HOWARD who simply followed the USA method which was simply giving complete control of the industry to the BANKERS. Who as we know are GREEDY, POWERFUL and then a bit more GREEDY and POWERFUL.

    THIS IS HOW IT WORKS (very simply put)…….. there is a Licence Holder and in order to be a Licence Holder, you have to have HUGE financial backing, etc. These Licence Holders, issue Representative Licences to those who actually give the advice OR present the packages to either other Representative Licencees or to the people directly. Bit like Used Car or Real Estate SALES PERSONS, they hold a REP. LICENCE which ties them to their particular LICENCE HOLDER (mostly BANKS). So, essentially, these Rep. Licencees push the packages and advice presented by these Licence Holders and which gives them commission.

    This system is SOOOOOOO dirty, the Deputy Treasurer, is in fact, out there TOUTING or DRUMMING UP business for and on behalf of Financial Advisers (Rep. Licencees) and hence the big banks and other Licence Holders because Australians haven't been that de-educated enough to swallow the corruption and actually USE the reps. in this industry.

    BANKS are way too POWERFUL:
    There should be GOVT owned banks both Federal and State and these should be run along side these greedy monstrosities, as was the case a decade or two ago. Australia was then in control of Australia's ECONOMY and had much more 'economic tools' available to it, other than just the RBA and its ability to change the interest rate. The current system puts the MegaCorp BANKS (all of which are 43%-49% owned by the SAME FOREIGN banks) in charge of Australia's ECONOMY and that is simply NOT acceptable.

    MegaCorps are why capitalism is failing…. they destroy real competition and interfere in anything that restricts their greed. They destroy democracy and destroy any visage of markets being free from their interference or any government for that matter.

    These are the mongrels that do not pay tax and who extract and suck up the wealth, leaving nations in poverty, high violent crimes, drug use out of control and a populace that is de-educated and easily controlled.
    3rd Feb 2015
    They could walk through a Barbed Wire fence and not get a Scratch !!

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