ASIC Accepts EU From Non-Aligned Advice Group

ASIC has accepted an enforceable undertaking (EU) from Queensland boutique financial advice group, Sentinel Private Wealth (SPW), after it was found to have given poor financial advice.

The regulator stated the EU followed ASIC’s surveillance of the SPW business, which was proceeded by enforcement action against two of SPW’s advisers.

ASIC’s surveillance found that SPW advisers

  • had not completed adequate inquiries into clients’ circumstances
  • had not completed sufficient analysis to determine the suitability of strategies
  • had not clearly defined the scope of advice
  • and had used generic reasons to support advice

ASIC also found that audits conducted by SPW did not sufficiently identify these issues and was concerned SPW may have failed to take reasonable steps to ensure that its representatives complied with financial services laws and failed to carry out adequate supervisory arrangements.

ASIC stated that SPW had co-operated with the regulator and had taken steps to address its concerns but, under the EU, will still be required to engage an independent expert to assess and report on its audit framework.

The expert would also review SPW’s policies and procedures, and provide ongoing reviews of client file audits for approximately 18 months.