FASEA Exam Pass Rates Plateau


FASEA has released the exam results from the May 2021 Financial Advisers Exam and again results appear to have plateaued.

The authority says that 69 percent of all candidates passed the May exam.

This is the same percentage overall as passed the March 2021 exam series, compared with a 67 percent overall pass rate for the January 2021 series (see: FASEA Exam – Pass Rate Steadies).

Stephen Glenfield.

FASEA says that for the May exam 74 percent of candidates sitting  for the first time passed (also 74 percent in March 2021), compared with an average of 82.4 percent across all exams.

A total of 1,894 advisers sat the May exam compared with an average of 1,437 across all exams

Other result highlights include:

  • More than 14,850 advisers have passed the adviser exams held to date representing 74 percent of advisers on ASIC’s Financial Adviser Register
  • Overall, 89 percent of advisers who have sat the exam have passed
  • To date, 1,918 unsuccessful candidates have re-sat the exam with 65 percent passing at a re-sit

FASEA Chief Executive Officer Stephen Glenfield says that more 16,700 advisers have sat the exam with nine in 10 demonstrating they have the skills to apply their knowledge of advice construction, ethics and legal requirements to the practical scenarios tested in the exam.

The statement says that candidates who were unsuccessful in this exam will receive additional individual feedback to highlight the curriculum areas where they have under-performed. They will also receive an invitation to a FASEA-led webinar to help them understand their results and provide guidance on how to prepare for their next sitting.

It says that further analysis of the May exam data has highlighted areas for improvement, particularly amongst unsuccessful candidates. Exam question areas advisers have under-performed on the May exam are set out below.

Financial Advice Regulatory and Legal Obligations

  • Demonstrating knowledge of when practitioners are required by law to provide a retail client with key documentation i.e. FSG/SOA
  • Demonstrating knowledge of the components of key advice documentation that is provided to the client
  • Evaluating case studies and identifying breaches of financial disclosure obligations
  • Applying relevant sections of the Corporations Act when identifying responsible provider obligations, including breaches of those obligations
  • Evaluating client scenarios in terms of legal requirements of privacy legislation

Applied Ethical and Professional Reasoning and Communication

  • Identifying sources of judgement and biases and their influence on financial advice
  • Effectively applying the FASEA code to various client scenarios and identifying compliance and non-compliance

Financial Advice Construction

  • Demonstrating an understanding of advising on complex family structures in constructing the advice

The statement notes that existing advisers have until the end of 2021 to pass the exam.  FASEA is offering three further sittings in 2021 both online and in physical locations (subject to Covid protocols). Click here for exam booking information on the FASEA website.

It adds that more than 2,700 advisers have booked for the July exam, to be held from 15 to 20 July 2021 and more than 230 advisers have booked for the September exam, to be held from 9 to 14 September 2021. Bookings close on 20 August 2021.

To assist advisers preparing for the exam, FASEA provides preparation resources, including practice questions.

FASEA also notes that in late June the Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and the Digital Economy announced Government’s intention to extend the transition date to 30 September 2022 for existing relevant providers who have attempted the exam unsuccessfully at least twice prior to 1 January 2022.