SAFAA welcomes streamlining of financial advice regulation to the benefit of retail investors

The Stockbroker and Financial Advisers Association (SAFAA) has always supported high professional standards for those providing stockbroking and investment advice to retail investors in Australia. SAFAA therefore welcomes the government’s announcement that the education, training and ethical standards for the provision of financial advice will be set by Treasury, with ASIC taking on the role of the disciplinary body and administering the exams for entry to the profession.

“ASIC has significant experience in monitoring misconduct through its regulatory oversight of licensees,” said Judith Fox, CEO SAFAA. “It makes sense to have the discipline of financial advisers align with the discipline of licensees.”

“And it is a common-sense approach to have Treasury responsible for setting the education, training and ethical standards in the financial advice sector,” she noted. “This will ensure alignment with the approach to policy arising from the Hayne Royal Commission recommendations.”

SAFAA also welcomes the government’s recognition that utilising the Financial Services and Credit Panel (FSCP) within ASIC and the expertise of Treasury simplifies the regulatory framework governing the provision of financial advice.

“Streamlining the number of bodies involved in the oversight of financial advisers not only reduces complexity for advisers, but also adds value for retail investors across the country,” Ms Fox commented. “There will be greater clarity as to which regulator is involved in the oversight of financial advisers and reduced costs assist access to affordable advice for retail investors.”