Podcast News Wrap For 20 October 2020


Too Many Insurers In New Zealand?

There’s too many firms selling medical and life insurance in New Zealand says a former Fidelity Life executive. Speaking during the FSC’s Generations conference last week Financial Services Executive Don Allerston said the New Zealand market is oversaturated with 17 medical and life insurance companies operating in the country.

He also pointed to industry competitors such as Amazon, which is now selling insurance in India. See this week’s poll question.

Consumers Better Off With Financial Advice

New Zealanders who receive professional financial advice are better prepared for the future than those who don’t, according to a report published by Financial Advice NZ.

Its Trust In Advice survey also shows financial advisers are seen as trusted professionals by 93% of consumers who have consulted one.

Trusted Adviser Mark Open For Applications

Members of Financial Advice NZ can now apply for its Trusted Adviser quality mark. The mark is awarded to financial advisers who can show they have committed to continuing professional development at a level higher than that required by the regulator.

General Insurance Training Course

A general insurance training course for financial advisers has been launched by Strategi Institute to help provide advisers with the competence, knowledge, and skill to meet the requirements of the new advice regime. The firm’s David Greenslade says it is the only NZQA Category 1 training provider offering the course.

Covid-19 Knocks Kiwi’s Financial Confidence

New Zealanders are increasingly pessimistic about their financial position as a result of Covid-19, according to a report released by Cigna New Zealand.

Its Covid-19 Global Impact Study reveals that half those surveyed are worried about their ability to cope if they lose their job. Among the survey’s results are that 34 per cent said they were in a fair or poor situation in January, but by August that had risen to 41 per cent.

Two Independent Directors Appointed to FANZ Board

Former Act Party MP Heather Roy and financial literacy specialist David Kneebone have joined the board of Financial Advice NZ as independent directors for terms of 3 and 2 years respectively. In addition, Cecilia Farrow has been re-elected as the organisation’s Risk Practitioner Director.

In total, 63 people applied for the Independent Director positions and five financial advisers applied for the Risk Practitioner Director role.

Fidelity Life Posts Annual Profit Increase

Fidelity Life’s full year underlying profit rose by $6m to $17m according to its 2020 annual report. Helping the firm was a lift in net premium revenue to $158m and a drop in operating expenses. Claims paid to customers increased from $125m in 2019 to $139m in 2020. Chief Financial Officer and joint acting CEO Simon Pennington says the results are encouraging given the challenging environment.