FASEA on notice over ASIC submissions

The Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) is on formal notice to provide an answer on the content of submissions made by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and the reason those submissions were not made public.

The Parliament has formally indexed the questions on notice filed during Senate Estimates during which Queensland Liberal back-bencher, Amanda Stoker strongly quizzed FASEA chief executive, Stephen Glenfield.

Glenfield confirmed during the Senate Estimates hearing that ASIC had made submissions on all the standards put out by FASEA for consultation but said he could not recall what those submissions had suggested.

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Stoker also asked why submissions made to FASEA as part of the consultation were not being made public – something which Glenfield also undertook to take on notice and check.

Asked whether ASIC had made submission as part of the FASEA consultations, Glenfield said that the regulator had “made submissions on all of our standards we put out for consolidation”.

Stoker’s questions have prompted speculation in the adviser community about the level of influence of ASIC with respect to the FASEA code of ethics, particularly the controversial Standard three.

ASIC announced yesterday that it would not be monitoring or enforcing individual advisers’ compliance with the code, declaring that it was specifically prevented from doing so under the Corporations Act.

The ASIC announcement is regarded as placing increased pressure on advice licensees to police the conduct of their advisers.

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FASEA haven't made the submissions public, because it would be a major embarrassment for them. The submissions (some of which I have seen) pointed out major flaws with their regulations and they have almost completely ignored the suggestions from financial planners and our associations. Instead, they plunged head-first into a pool of ideological, unworkable swill proposed by ASIC and Choice for their own benefit. If the submissions are released, this will become patently obvious, so watch as FASEA duck and weave, and dream up ridiculous excuses to protect their Orwellian regime.

Not one submission throughout the entire FASEA Professional Standards consultation process in 2018 was made public. Submissions to the likes of Treasury, ASIC & APRA are placed on the public record, so why not FASEA? Where is the accountability of this "regulator"?

No rush FASEA, it's only been a month since you were asked those questions....

Yes, it was on 23/10/2019.
It is now over a month and no response to Senator Stoker's questions has been forthcoming.
Stoker: You said FASEA conducted a number of consultations.Was one of them with ASIC ?
Glenfield: ASIC made submissions on all of our standards we put out for consultation.
Stoker:So that's a yes ?
Genfield: Yes.
Stoker: What did they say ?
Stoker: You'll take it on notice ?
Stoker: The reason I ask is that I couldn't find that submission in any publicly available place.Am I wrong about that ?
Are they publicly available ?

One month, no response as to what ASIC's submissions said and no response as to where the submissions may be accessed.
At this stage, it states the response is currently not overdue.
How long does Stephen Glenfield have to respond ?
Irrespective of the maximum time frame, would it not be best practice from FASEA to respond within a reasonable time frame and if not, why not ?
Is there a reason why Stephen Glenfield and FASEA are not making public the submissions ?
Surely every financial adviser and licensee is entitled to see these submissions to such an important process.
If not, what is there to hide ?
By not releasing all relevant documentation and submissions, it creates suspicion of potential collusion, influence and cover up.

Mr Glenfield knows all too well no submissions have been made publicly available. FASEA won't publicly release the consultation submissions as if they did, the evidence would support the hypothesis that FASEA ignored 90% of the recommendations from the associations, licensees & advisers. One only has to look at the exam consultation where the ONLY change was the reduction of the exam reading time from 30min to 15min. Is it ethical to mislead Parliament?

Anyone looking for some light entertainment should check out this link, then search for FASEA to see what questions that they need to answer - the ones on conflicts & education should be quite interesting to see a response.


There is some difficult questions FASEA has to answer - am I can not wait to hear the answers. I guess FASEA is taking it's time with the answers - people tend to do that when they have something to hide - or unethical.

It is becoming abundantly clear that FASEA is a dysfunctional organisation. It is not delivering the outcomes intended by its enabling legislation. Much of what it is doing is ultimately making things worse for consumers, not better.

A fish rots from the head and in FASEA's case that would appear to be a Board that is stacked with too much commercial conflict and ideological bias, and a bumbling bureaucrat CEO who is out of his depth.

Minister Hume needs to intervene now!

FASEA has been a failure since it was first established by the useless Kelly O'Dwyer when she as Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services.
No government appointed authority has the right to withhold submissions from the public and especially from the government. Surely they are in contempt of parliament by not responding to Amanda Stoker's questions in a more timely manner.
No authority in my memory has refused to engage with stakeholders when considering laws which affect so many people including including mainly advisers and clients.
If we ran our businesses that way FASEA operates we would be out of business within 6 months.
Time for Jane Hume to step in and bring this organisation to heel as they are totally incompetent.

Surely the financial advisers on the FASEA board should have resigned?

Current FASEA Board member, Deborah Kent has been the AFA President, the AFA Treasurer, the AFA NSW State Director and the NSW State Director for the Authorised Representatives Association.
So, it would seem impossible to imagine that Deborah Kent would accept the process and outcome and the significant negative impact on the very people she has represented for years.
I expect the 3 Directors who have a significant history with CHOICE, Financial Rights Legal Centre, Consumers Federation Australia and Consumer Action Law Centre are simply exerting the ideology and agenda they have arrived with and the outcome is evidence of this.
The FASEA Board is skewed and conflicted due to the backgrounds of some of its Directors and the result is a Code of Ethics and specifically Standard 3 that ironically will not enhance consumer outcomes.
The significant and detrimental impact on advisers businesses are not of any concern to these 3 Directors as the organisations they have represented in the past have called for the total banning of risk insurance commissions during the LIF in the name of protecting the consumer.
Nothing could be further from the truth or create a negative consumer outcome.
The FASEA process has been a very unfortunate lesson in how not to achieve a fair and reasonable outcome for all parties to the financial advice process.
Adviser's rights or position has been disregarded entirely.
Minister Hume must not ignore the concerns of so many.
If she does ignore the concerns, it will be obvious that a conspiracy against financial advisers does actually exist.

Choice and CALC do not represent real consumers anymore. They are simply vehicles for professional agitators to milk the public purse. Much of what they recommend in financial services is actually contrary to consumers' interests. The government needs to stop providing these phonies with money and influence.

How much "notice" in the words...." take it on notice " is there ??

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