Candidate spike to prompt surge of new entrants

Wealth Data Colin Williams AFSL adviser numbers ASIC exam

29 April 2024
| By Laura Dew |
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A surge of new entrants to the financial advice system are expected in the coming weeks following the latest exam results from ASIC.

In the week to 26 April, there was only one new entrant to the Financial Adviser Register but a “surge” is expected in future weeks. During April, there have been 12 new entrants in total.

The results from the latest March financial adviser exam, which was delayed from February, showed a pass rate of 70 per cent with over 200 candidates passing. 

With 298 candidates sitting the exam, this was a far higher number of candidates than for all exams held in 2023 perhaps due to the change in exam format which was implemented this year following a Treasury consultation.

This removed the short-answer questions from the exam and increased the number of multiple-choice questions. It also removed the requirement limiting exam participation to new financial advisers who have completed an approved degree and existing providers.

Exam date Number of candidates
February 2023   192
May 2023   195
August 2023   205
November 2023    219
March 2024   298


Looking at overall adviser numbers, there was a net change of -1 to bring adviser numbers to stand at 15,586, an improvement on a loss of eight in the previous week. This was the fourth consecutive week that more licensees had ceased than commenced, with one commencing and three ceasing.

Some 18 licensee owners had net gains of 22 advisers, and another 18 had net losses of 21 advisers. 

Four licensee owners were up by two advisers each including Industry Super Holdings, Wilsons and NAB, while 14 licensee owners were up by one each.

Centrepoint Alliance was up by three advisers – two from Millennium3 and one from Fortnum – but it also lost one adviser from its Professional Investment Services licensee who has not been appointed elsewhere.

Count was down by three advisers: one from Count, one from GPS Wealth and one from Merit Wealth. Only the adviser from Merit Wealth has been reappointed, opting to join Capstone Financial Planning.

Viridian was down by two advisers, and 16 licensees, including Findex and WT Financial Group, were down by a net of one.

This week’s numbers mean the net change for calendar year 2024 is a loss of 30 advisers, but over the financial year to date, the number stands at a gain of 31.  

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