Posts tagged Commonwealth Bank
Money for nothing (and the tricks are fees)

The Royal Commission into Misconduct in Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services exposed conduct - “fee for no service" - that shows contempt for both consumers and the law. Licensees' confected contrition aside, their ‘gold medal’ revenue generation strategies have further eroded their social capital and generated a wave of consumer outrage that is entirely justified. Unfortunately, those advisers that have worked hard to build sustainable businesses supporting their clients and servicing their needs, may find themselves collateral damage in this War of Accountability. This article looks at the FFNS issue, ASIC's response and proposes some immediate actions for advisers and licensees.

Read More
Don't look back in anger: Insights from a former adviser

In reality, financial planners and compliance reviewers have more in common than they realise; both understand the value of advice and both are committed to building an advice profession. I know this to be true because I've done both roles. Here are the lessons I learnt when transitioning from financial advice to regulatory advice and compliance. Don't look back in anger.

Read More
Trust, Culture and Enforcement

On 12 September 2017, ASIC Chairman Greg Medcraft presented at the Thomson Reuters Newsmaker event and articulated his view that ASIC is primarily an enforcement body responsible for promoting investor trust and confidence in financial services. With reference to the ongoing actions involving Commonwealth Bank, NAB and a range of smaller licensees, the Chairman discussed ASIC's priorities and addressed a variety of topics including trust, reputation and culture. This article explores the reasons, consequences and implications of those views. 

Read More
What is “independent advice”?

The increased public focus on vertical integration and the dangers of institutional advice has, understandably, driven an increasing focus on independent advice. The challenge, for both consumers and advisers, is that “independence” is neither consistently nor effectively defined. This article considers whether "Independence" and "institutional alignment" can co-exist and asks whether the profession needs to define independence on the basis of outcomes rather than structures.  

Read More
Wading in the shallows: Advice, ASIC and Accountability

On 26 June 2014, The Senate’s Economics References Committee published its report on the performance of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. The report has been widely covered in mainstream media. Although presented as simply an assessment of ASIC’s performance based on two distinct case studies, the report was highly critical of both ASIC and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia; criticisms relentlessly pursued and compellingly presented by Adele Ferguson in her articles for Fairfax and in her Four Corners’ story. The Committee made 61 recommendations and a number of observations about both ASIC and CBA. This article is a high level review of the more interesting aspects.

Read More
Commonwealth Financial Planning v Couper: An Insider’s view

Martin Culleton, a Partner with regional law firm RMB lawyers, was the solicitor for Noel Stevens (and then the estate of Noel Stevens) who took on Commonwealth Financial Planning over inappropriate advice, secured a decision in his client’s favour and successfully defended CFP’s appeal against the initial judgment. In this post Culleton talks about Commonwealth Financial Planning v Couper, compliance, conflict and the specific challenges faced by advisers within vertically integrated businesses.

Read More
Risk Advice and Advice Risk: 6 Lessons from Couper

In the context of Commissioner Kell's crusade against commissions, churn and conflicts, risk advisers' processes have started to attract a heightened degree of regulatory attention. Despite the expected legislative roll back of some FOFA elements, regulatory scrutiny of risk advice is only likely to increase in the wake of the New South Wales Court of Appeal's decision in Commonwealth Financial Planning Limited v Couper [2013] NSWCA 444. This article considers what FOS, ASIC and PI Insurers are likely to take from this decision and suggests steps Advisers should take in response.

Read More