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Australians unsure of whom to trust for financial advice: survey

Australians are relying less on financial advisers and websites for financial information, with 70 per cent saying they do not know whom to trust when it comes to arranging financial matters, a new survey has revealed.

The survey, conducted by the Financial Planning Standards Board (FPSB) in conjunction with the FPA, also found that 41 per cent of Australians would pick their family and friends for information on financial matters.

In addition, the proportion of Australians who say they feel confident in their ability to meet their financial life goals (16 per cent) is lower than the global average (22 per cent).

However, a greater proportion of Australians place a higher priority on being free of major financial debt (62 per cent) and free of common consumer debt (59 per cent) than the global averages (55 per cent and 54 per cent, respectively).

Of the services most valued in Australia, budgeting and debt management and retirement planning were voted "the most helpful", while globally, retirement planning ranks highest and investment planning ranks second highest.

The survey also found that slightly more than half of Australians are unsure whether financial planning is regulated, while 83 per cent feel it is very or somewhat important that it be regulated.

This is higher than the global average of 41 per cent for those who are unsure, and 79 per cent for those who feel it is important to regulate financial planning.


Of those who work with Certified Financial Planner (CFP) professionals in Australia, 35 per cent said they are confident they will achieve their financial life goals, compared with 24 per cent of those working with any financial professional.

FPA chief executive Mark Rantall said, "The survey reaffirms our own findings and validates our strategy of lifting education and professional standards of professional financial planners to help earn the trust of more Australians".

"With 5,500 Certified Financial Planner professionals in Australia, the FPA has an incredible opportunity to help Australians take control of their finances, be more confident and secure in their financial decisions, and have greater financial wellbeing."