BFP backs ASIC and FPA on s923A

The Boutique Financial Planners group, made up of FPA members who are independently-owned, will accept ASIC’s clarification and not join lobbying efforts to repeal the legislation.

BFP president Dacian Moses told ifa that while many of his members are concerned that ASIC’s s923A clarification will make it difficult for them to differentiate themselves from the institutionally-aligned sector, they have decided to accept ASIC’s position.

“The BFP wishes to express public support for the FPA and their position on ASIC's latest clarification of s923A and the test for independence,” Mr Moses said.

“We can see no value in an attempt to repeal aspects of this clarification and no benefit in quibbling with the regulator on the position they have taken. The public interest is best served by clarity and that has now been provided with respect to the use of restricted words on which our regulator places great importance.”

Mr Moses said the FPA’s “consideration of the public interest” sets it apart from other associations in the financial advice market. Membership of the FPA is compulsory for BFP members and FPA chair Neil Kendall is a longstanding BFP figure.

The BFP includes practices that meet the definition of independence outlined in s923A of the Corporations Act and others that “never will”, Mr Moses added.

Rather than join efforts to repeal the legislation, which are currently underway, the BFP instead will lobby for greater transparency of ownership for advisers aligned to the institutions.

“Advisers should be required to prominently identify the licensee and the ultimate owner of that licensee on all public documentation,” he said.

The BFP will also push for the inclusion of real estate as a financial product and the introduction of shorter financial advice documents.

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