The FMA has approved almost 800 transitional licence applications, representing around 5,500 financial advisers, says the regulator in a statement to the media.
With around 10,000 financial advisers in New Zealand, this means well over half now have a license and, says the FMA, new applications are being received by the organisation every day.
The Government delayed the start of the new financial advice regime from this June to “…no earlier than March 2021”, to allow advisers to focus on helping clients, customers and families, during Covid-19. A revised start date will be announced later this year.
FMA Director of Market Engagement John Botica says the current Covid-19 situation shows how vital financial advisers are.
“It’s been encouraging to see a number of financial advisers demonstrating the value they bring to their clients,” he says.
It’s been encouraging to see a number of financial advisers demonstrating the value they bring to their clients…
“The extension of transitional licensing deadlines was provided for exactly this reason and we’ve spoken with a number of advisers to hear how they are focusing on their clients’ needs and following the principles of good conduct through these difficult times.”
Financial advice providers who have successfully applied for a transitional licence don’t need to reapply, says Botica. The transitional licence will take effect when the new regime starts and is valid for two years.
Botica says: “In the meantime, we urge advisers who have not begun the transitional licensing process to continue to give careful thought as to how they will operate in the new regime.
“Generally, the feedback we continue to receive is that the transitional licensing process is straightforward and efficient.”
In June the FMA will begin consultation on the standard conditions for full Financial Advice Provider licences.
Botica says the full licence application process will be completely online and be an expanded version of the transitional licence process.