Seniors lobby group launches financial information service
Lobby group National Seniors, which is made up of members over the age of 50, has launched a free and "independent" information service aimed at helping older Australians with financial decisions.
Speaking to ifa, National Seniors' chief executive Michael O'Neill said the Financial Information Desk service – launched at Parliament House yesterday – is a free, "independent" phone service through which older Australians can seek financial guidance from someone with a "background in financial decision making".
"We won't be providing advice, because we are not advisers, but what we will be able to do is assist people in their preparation, for example, for a meeting with a financial adviser," Mr O'Neill said.
"[The service can also] assist them with going through government-controlled measures like pensions, and just being a source of information to bounce ideas off about issues they have been thinking about."
According to the lobby group, the service will also be able to assist people on issues such as superannuation, tax, aged care and housing.
The launch of the Financial Information Desk follows the government's decision to no longer fund the National Information Centre for Retirement Investment.
"We have picked up the service and picked up the key staff who provide that key information function," Mr O'Neill said.
"We are very much building up the skills and capacity of people who have been doing this and clearly understand the distinction between information and advice."
Currently, the service will be accessible to members of the National Seniors group, but Mr O'Neill said it is hoped to expand it so financial information can be provided to other older Australians over the age of 50.
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