Financial Advice New Zealand has revealed it is forming an adviser panel in association with the Code Working Group (CWG), to ensure the adviser’s voice is heard as the development of the draft Code progresses.
This announcement was included in Financial Advice New Zealand’s recent submission to the Code Working Group on the Consultation Paper for the new Code.
“The Advisory Group will comprise adviser representatives from all sectors – risk, lending, investment, financial planning and general insurance,” said Sue Brown, Chair, Financial Advice New Zealand.
Brown noted that, as with any complex issue, there are many views to consider.
“The Advisory Group will comprise adviser representatives from all sectors…”
“Our goal is to ensure the adviser view has a strong voice so that we achieve a constructive regulatory outcome for our members which, in turn, will ensure access to quality advice for the New Zealand public,” she said, adding:
“We urge all advisers to read our submission and provide feedback on the commentary series we’ll be running over the coming weeks.”
The submission from the new body raised a concern that the consultation paper’s current proposals would cause a “fundamental restructuring” among financial advisers, placing the future of a large number of independent advisers at risk.
“This restructuring will likely result in the elimination of large sections of the independent (we use the term here to describe ‘non-aligned’ practitioner) self-employed advice practitioner and a ‘dumbing-down’ or even elimination of advice in many engagements,” the submission stated.
“This will result in reduced competition and choice for the public of NZ, lower standards of customer care and compromise the ability of New Zealanders to access good advice.”
The submission included the following recommendations to address this concern:
- Ensuring a clear delineation between product sale and financial advice
- Individual competence, where a Level 5 certificate (or equivalent) should be considered as a minimum standard for every adviser
- Using an internationally recognised standard for defining the term Financial Planning
- Taking a principles-based approach in developing the proposed Code
“Working closely with the CWG and regulator so that the adviser point of view is well understood and addressed will be crucial over the coming months, and will be a major focus for us,” added Brown.
Click here to read Financial Advice NZ’s full submission.