More licensees close as adviser numbers continue to drop

This was a significant week for the adviser numbers as another eight licensees decide to close, which translated into the loss of 15 adviser roles, according to the weekly analysis of the Financial Adviser Register (FAR) by HFS Consulting. 

At the same time, the number of actual advisers for the entire industry dropped by 40 to 22,201. 

HFS’ director, Colin Williams, explained that six of those closed licensees were associated with accounting firms which was in line with the broader trend which saw more accounting firms reducing the number of advisers on their books. 

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Williams said it would be interesting to watch how many of these small accounting based licensees would remain post FASEA (the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethic Authority) exam requirements as their numbers were reducing each week.  

“It could lead to opportunities for established advisers to form new relationships with accountants who are calling time on their short financial advice career,” Williams said. 

Also, according to HFS’ analysis, this week saw 39 licensee owners make net losses for a total of (-77) adviser roles. 

This was followed by 47 licensees having reported net adviser losses for a total of 81 adviser roles, with IOOF-owned Bridges Financial Services and Garvan Financial Planning (MLC) losing 15 and seven roles, respectively. 

In total, 46 adviser roles were appointed this week, only one being a ‘new’ provisional adviser, while 89 roles ‘resigned’ giving the net total of (-43). 

Source: HFS Consulting 

Year-to-date both IOOF and MLC Groups were down (-105) adviser roles each, and were followed by AMP Group which was down (-95).  

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Your numbers are incorrect the number of registered advisers is below 20,000, 3k plus are probably compliance people so it’s already down to 17k for actual fin advisers other 4to 5 k are probably limited license holders mainly accountants just waiting or in progress to wind up their afsl

Pls check off your figures against adviser rating dropping by 100+ per week which is 5,200 pa

In 3 years it will be 4.500 to 5.200 advisers remaining tops

Big drop off coming in fist and second quarter of 2022

The most surprising aspect of all this is how many mature fp businesses are just shutting their doors and exiting

Such a diabolical disaster which will take a decade to recover from

Compliance Officers, Intrafund Advisers, Stockbrokers, Managers... the true number of comprehensive financial advisers remaining is in stark contrast to the numbers that are run with for the purposes of media reporting.

Certainly will be a drop off in quarter 1 2022 although your prediction of 4.5-5.2k I see as a little sensationalist. We'll see though as I believe it will be at least below 10k

Very few intrafund "advisers" are on the FAR. Most intrafund advice is provided by call centre and sales staff who operate under the general advice exemption for super fund employees, even though they are actually providing personal advice.

Disagree in some respects. I get what you mean by call centre consultants providing advice, and you're correct, they're not registered. Most industry funds (Aware Super, Australian Super, CBus, Link provides their service to some) have actual intrafund advice teams (as do AMP, MLC etc.) that are fully registered though and have same education, BID requirements as comprehensive advisers.

They do have token licensed advisers to create perfectly compliant files for a small number of clients, so they can provide "proof" of their high compliance standards. But most of their advice is not actually given by these people. It is given verbally by call centre and workplace sales staff, with no documentation whatsoever.

"A decade to recover from"? I think you're being optimistic. I don't think we will recover until the self-absorbed bureaucrats and politicians that caused the compliance burden and mess are sacked and we have clear-thinking adults running things. So, given this, it will probably never recover. P.S. we could compromise and let the above mentioned pollies and bureaucrat creatures keep their jobs as long as they are 'qualified'. Yes, make them subject to a FASEA-like regime and sit an 8 unit uni degree to keep their jobs, even if it is a lowly backbencher who doesn't need such qualifications - you know - like risk advisers currently. Oh and don't forget to throw in an ethics exam as we know how that has everyone's best interests at heart! Yes, a 'test' for ethics - that's gotta be accurate for sure! Dear oh bloody dear, how did we let these clowns take us to this point?

LOL... a financial planning ethics exam for politicians? They don't yet have any ethics for themselves. :P

An industry unfairly stuffed up. So much experience leaving!

Once the great 'drop off' begins and adviser numbers are decimated, wouldn't that mean less oversight costs incurred by our overlords which would then mean less costs passed onto advisers to pay? Would this also mean less claims put forward to the PI insurers as those remaining are "Ethical" and Qualified? Surely there needs to be some benefit to the remaining advisers who stay in.......

I don't think so... I think there will less advisers left to pay whatever fees, provisions and whatever else they decide to get away with adding to the total, leading to a higher fee. That's how it has worked in the past, and I can't see any reason they would change this concept. :P

It’s not just the max. Exodus it’s the lack of new people joining the profession! Insurance companies must surly by now see the writing on the wall if these projected numbers occur( and they will )
There are people already looking for roles where the FASEA exams are not a requirement and others have simply given up on anything constructively being wound back and achieved
We will end up with a bunch of academics (like the police force ) and no one to go out snd do the heavy lifting and talking face to face realities with clients
ASIC and FASEA are the captain Smiths of this Titanic They would rather go down with the ship then admitt they are wrong ( on so many levels)
Captain Smith had guts and integrity something these other pair have no idea off ! And they are trying to teach it to us
Dear lord help it’s not to late but the clock is ticking

Yep. I have FASEA Post Grad Quals and I drive a mining truck for $160k per year package working 23 weeks a year.

Going to go job share with a mate. Work approx 80 days a year get total remuneration of $80k.

Salary Sacrifice a Landcruiser with Toyota Fleet discount.

What a f..n joke.

Would much rather be in front of clients but why????????

hey mate, can you let me know where I can get me a job like yours?

m.fin plan cfp, and another master's to boot. very detail-oriented perfectionist, haven't been sick in 21 years.

run my own business and value hard work. where can I get a job like yours so I can get out?

please assist a fellow planner in need.

thank you,

cfp. m.fin plan

What a surprise? NOT. Well done ASIC you have single-handedly decimated an industry and destroyed the livelihood of many decent, honest, hardworking advisers while you sit back, relax and collect your exorbitant levy that would bankrupt any small business.

@ Roger Ramjet,
You thoughts are wishful thinking.
The blue print for less advisers has already been set in motion.
Most Licensees and their AR's have been hit with an 80.0% increase in the ASIC adviser levy this year (April) because there were less advisers to prosecute than last year and ASIC were counting on specific numbers this year.
They have already anticipated even less advisers next year and have already flagged an 80.0% increase in the levy for Licensees and their AR's.
And whilst you think the TPB has forgotten you, well guess again, their fees this year for registered corporate entities has increased this year from $540 to over $900.
All I can say is God help the last man/woman (political correctness) ..still standing.

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