Hume addresses adviser mental health

AIA Australia Jane Hume

3 March 2022
| By Liam Cormican |
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Advice business profitability is of key concern for Senator Jane Hume if re-elected, with the minister acknowledging that the industry has faced a “very difficult time”.

Responding to a question about adviser mental health put to her by a member of the audience at the AIA Adviser Summit 2022, Senator Jane Hume, minister for superannuation and financial services said her vision for the advice industry was that it would ‘thrive and flourish’.

“There were some pretty dark days there but it's always darkest before the dawn. I am very excited for the prospects in this industry,” she said.

The audience member’s question drew on Deakin University and AIA Australia research from 2021 which showed that, when compared to the average Australian, financial advisers had a 64% higher chance of being in a moderate mental health risk group, a 51% higher chance of being in a high mental health risk group, and an 11% higher chance of being in a very high mental health risk group.

It asked whether, as was proven in the research, stress and anxiety from regulatory change would be included as part of a regulatory impact statement.

Hume replied, saying the industry had hit a stage of a “perfect storm” with the combination of changes from FOFA [Future of Financial Advice], the introduction of FASEA [Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority], the Hayne Royal Commission, COVID and COVID business impacts.

“You guys were essential workers, we needed you and your customers, your clients needed you,” said Hume.

Hume said it was now about making sure businesses could operate at their full potential.

“We want to make sure that your business is profitable because a profitable industry will attract the best and the brightest when we get those graduates coming through.”

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