Mixed Response to Dismantling of FASEA

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Do you support the Government’s move to split FASEA’s functions between the Treasury and ASIC?

  • Yes (54%)
  • Not sure (30%)
  • No (16%)

Nearly six out of ten respondents (58 percent) to our final poll of 2020 supported the Government’s move to split FASEA’s functions between the Treasury and ASIC.

However, nearly a third (29 percent) were not sure and another 13 percent did not support the winding down of the authority meaning that 42 percent of our respondents were not, at least initially, in favour of the move.

We had asked the question after the Government announced in mid-December that it would wind down FASEA and divide its role between ASIC and Treasury to create a single, central disciplinary body for financial advisers. (see: FASEA to be Dismantled).

The AFA and the FPA noted at the time that while there was still more detail to come, it was a positive step towards removing unnecessary duplication for advisers (see: Industry Bodies Respond).

However both membership organisations reminded advisers that while the functions currently undertaken by FASEA will be transferred to other agencies, they will still need to pass the FASEA exam by the end of 2021 and achieve the education standard by the end of 2025.

One commentator to our poll story said: I am not sure if this will make things better regulation wise. We are taking duties completed by FASEA and sharing them between Treasury and ASIC [which] seems to lead to duplication of responsibility and further duplication.

Besides, what regulatory responsibilities will the Treasury … really provide given that their main responsibility is the collection, management and distribution of government revenue?

Another commentator to our original story said: “That is a step in the right direction, though ASIC has admitted it has little idea as to why most Australians can no longer afford advice. Treasury has probably less experience and knowledge than ASIC, so the merry-go-round will continue, unless the regulators and the Government acknowledge that irrelevant, time consuming and expensive studies on subjects that life insurance advisers will never use, to attain useless qualifications, is one of the main reasons advisers have left the industry in their thousands.

“At least the Government is starting to listen. What they now need to do is understand the issues. Only then can we start fixing them.”

Our poll is open for another week and we are interested to hear your views…