Deakin professor slams advisers for ‘laughable’ education excuse

A Deakin University associate professor has criticised financial advisers who say they cannot afford a university degree, calling it a “laughable” excuse.

Adrian Raftery took to LinkedIn last week to bash advisers who say they cannot afford to pay for a university degree following the government’s new professional standards.

Earlier this year, the Corporations Amendment (Professional Standards of Financial Advisers) Bill 2016 passed Parliament, making it mandatory for both new and existing advisers to reach a degree-equivalent status.

Mr Raftery said the “latest excuse from the financial planning fraternity” as to why they will not do a university degree is because they cannot afford it.


“Wow! Is this the same fraternity that have made lifestyles out of devising financial plans to mums and dads to help save for their kid’s education?” he said.

“Can’t devise a savings plan for yourselves? Oh this is laughable.”

Mr Raftery also criticised those looking for a “cheap degree”.

“And then they say that they are going to go to lowest level university to get their degree because it is the cheapest! Oh please!” he said.

“Try telling Mr and Mrs Smith that you are doing a basic savings plan and recommending that little Jimmy goes to ZZZ Institute of Poo because all degrees are the same.”

Infocus Wealth Management managing director and chief executive Rod Bristow responded to the LinkedIn post, saying “an industry in transition to a profession will always have its 'outliers' who struggle with the change process”.

“Change in itself is becoming more and more complex - just ask governments around the world who are grappling with ways to move constituents toward unpopular policy positions,” he said.

“The advice industry is no different in regard to change. My view is it's important to focus on the majority within the industry who genuinely believe the industry needs to change and evolve; and who are making the hard decisions and leading by example to ensure this happens within their organisations.

“This sort of approach might not get the headlines, but in the long-term will bear fruit through sustainable businesses that help Australians from all walks of life meet their goals.”

In a separate statement on Twitter, Mr Raftery called on parents to recommend financial planning as a career choice for their children.

"The industry is currently unergoing a huge makeover with education standards and I expect that between 5,000 to 8,000 advisers will either retire or move to another field by 2023," he said.

"Unlike some other disciplines, there are huge opportunities to get a job in financal planning after the completion of their degree (B.Commerce at Deakin for example). To all my financial adviser LinkedIn friends, please provide support/endorsement of this opportunity for the young ones in the future."

Deakin professor slams advisers for ‘laughable’ education excuse
Deakin professor slams advisers for ‘laughable’ education excuse
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