Only 60% pass July FASEA exam

A new low of 60% have passed the July Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) exam.

There was 30% of candidates that were re-sitting the exam compared to an average of 20% in recent exams.

Over 18,140 advisers had sat the exam in total with over 16,030 having passed.

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There were 14,070 passes recorded on the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) Financial Adviser Register (FAR), as well as 1,650 ceased who could be re-authorised, and 310 new entrants that could be authorised.

Overall, 88% of advisers who have sat the exam have passed with 1,932 unsuccessful candidates who had re-sat the exam doing so with a 65% pass rate.

Of first-time sitters, 69% of candidates sitting the exam for the first time passed the July exam, compared with an average of 81% across all exams.

There were 1,963 advisers sat the exam compared with an average of 1,474 across all exams.

Stephen Glenfield, FASEA chief executive said: “FASEA encourages unsuccessful candidates and future candidates to access the range of tools available to assist advisers preparing for the exam, FASEA provides preparation resources, including practice questions online.

“Feedback received from past re-sit participants of the exam indicated these resources were useful for their preparation.”

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must be the accountants taking the test.

100%. one asked me what AML/CTF was. I couldn't believe it. the other one I spoke to didn't know they had to get the client's permission before forwarding information to third parties.

I said better study those two sections you will need to know to pass fasea. both failed the second time. now trying for the third.

hope the government keeps increasing chances for accountants, I think there was an accountant who took the test 5 times and passed on the fifth attempt.

Don't you mean "Accountants Faking the test"?

who cares (most are depressed), they are "FAILING" the test. so they are taking it, and not making it because they are failing it.

Couldn't agree more. In my previous role as an auditor for a accountant based licensee and a non accountant based licensee, hands down the accountants by a few hundred country miles had the highest number of compliance concerns noted on average. Yet ironically they always acted as the most superior. Go figure.

did you know there are 20,000 accountants who don't even have a degree? grandfathered. they are for the first time having to get one because of fasea, and quietly handing back their limited AFSLs.

how are these people allowed to give advice to consumers? I have seen most of their advice, it is on a spectrum of totally incompetent to reckless. lucky for them it's hard to sue them.

p.s. accountants from a massive inferiority complex and depression.

p.s.s. can you all please stop calling them experts at anything other than experts at having no money and being poor (they are good at that, and being totally incompetent)

Also lucky for accountants, ASIC completely ignores the dodgy financial advice they give, unless they have an AFSL. This is another reason accountants are handing back AFSLs.

ASIC is more focused on persecuting licensed advisers than protecting consumers.

I am not cynical but after completing my Ethics doesn't FASEA have a lot of ethical biases, such as now being able to extend the fees payable by upping the fail rate on the exam and then have them resit until Sept next year. Hard to be all high and mighty when they are one of the most conflicted organisations running around. Or maybe the quality of the people sitting the exam was low.

fasea had on its board at one time, a luminary of the advice profession, Matthew Rowe. need I say more?

the government couldn't stand any more embarrassment from the body and wisely wound it up. the govt needs to do the same with the leftovers from asic and clean it top to bottom

Not quite sure what you mean there. The exam fee is largely subsidised by the government currently. Next year the exam will be administered by ASIC and the fee to sit will no longer be government subsidised. Expect to pay a few thousand to sit again next year.

1) I must be one of the esteemed, vaunted, and legendary 69%... Just got the email this morning!

BTW, I would ascribe some of the statistical anomalies in the article to those AR's not wanting to have their results posted on the FAR, and the writer wanting to emphasise the negative;

2) I would also [at least partially] ascribe the lower pass rate to lack of preparation due to EoFY work, and wanting to fit in a possible resit before 2022 at the then current rules;

3) Although I certainly did not prepare to the degree I would have liked, I would also say that a large proportion of the material [even though it changes from sitting to sitting] should be known verbatim from ongoing CPD and general professional knowledge; and IMO, a large proportion of the unknown can be answered by pure logic [and a pure heart!];

4) For me, the biggest problem was my aging eyes, blurring over the length of the test; some fatigue from a continuous 3.5 hours in front of a computer screen, and to a lesser degree, not being in "Practiced Test Shape".

I also ensured [due to the conditions] to have plenty of bottled water, and some fruit and chocolate available [permitted, as long as eaten in room - I asked beforehand]. Saves toilet, eye, and face massage time!

5) IMO, waiving of the "3 Month Resit Gap" was important [a question I asked of a FASEA functionary at a preparatory Webinar, which was enacted immediately after the Webinar [pat self on back!]. Very happy to now not need it, especially at $594 a pop.

IMO, there should be monthly sittings, with PERHAPS a one sitting gap for receiving Test results and additional corrective preparation.

This test is NOT rocket science, nor a test of hairsplitting legalistic mumbo-jumbo and memorised Corpse Act [sic] Sections, Subsections, Paragraphs, Subparagraphs, "Itemised Point"s; general Behavioral Finance Psychobabble [just a little bit...], or phrases like "Nonwithstanding Section 9xx, Para 17, Subparagraph (b) iv", please explain your perspective on the social dialectic of...", etc, etc; although it is handy to remember the important ones;

6) I found the "[email protected]" Enrollment Managers very responsive and explanatory to inquiries regarding personal situations - don't be afraid to ask questions beforehand!

7) Good luck to all - For me, there is now one less well intended yet demeaning, unnecessary, overreaching, misdirected, bureaucratic, politically expedient, ideologically driven, philosophically misbegotten, structurally badly designed, costly, time consuming Governmental imposition on my life to deal with!


Unfortunately, I can understand why you didn't pass. Sad really.

He passed. Said so in the first paragraph.


ads what happened, mate?

haha just got home from the pub and saw the fail mark. Bit of a drinky drink rant. But, im still cranky and would like to see where i failed

ok, but do you have the $1,000,000 or not we can allocate to jane hume's defeat ?

I gather he didn't pass the FASEA exam and is letting off a bit frustration by blaming others and making laughable threats that just won't happen. Sad really.

Don't wait for court, put your answers in the comments here. I would love to see you justifying your behaviour, it would be entertaining #4monthsuntilretirement

Ads, condolences that you failed your sitting, but now you have some practical experience to make the next one easier!

1) BTW, I also thought my test "marginal" and was prepared for failure, knowing that I had missed a few of the more esoteric answers, multiplied by "No points" for getting a single answer wrong in a multiple True/False question matrix.

2) I actually agree with your general sentiments, although if I had $1 Million, I wouldn't waste it on Hume - she will self subvert her sanctimonious, "Holier than thou", evasive, platitude mouthing, media trained posterior all by herself...

3) Regarding your primary beef: Following is part of a "Post Test Feedback" email I wrote to the FA Exam Managers, in the hope that throwing a pebble in a pond creates some waves:

"Testing Ethics and Morals":

"...What I don’t like, and don’t accept as a methodology, particularly in a test which can have such life altering impact for an AR, is the “Ethics” assessment framework of subjective answers to subjective questions, based on subjective, theoretical “Ethical” assertions about potential conduct.

BTW, In my CPD reading [at least with Kaplan and their ‘experts’, one whom [I think] is a Dutch PhD, and clearly doesn’t write English smoothly and clearly...], I have often found that the “Ethics” and “FASEA” segments/Case Studies/Tests are often quite “woolly” in their descriptiveness; sometimes go off on somewhat unrelated tangents, and worse, sometimes make a very debatable “Ethical” assertion, then “scaffold” out from there [as they say in the Education Sector...], while extending the original debatable assertion out even further.

I won’t call it “Expansion to the Eccentric” or “Reduction to the Ridiculous”, but IMO, ethical conduct is consumed and learnt with your mother’s milk, not taught as a “skill” to adults. Soon there will be a “FADSERA” Authority – “Financial Adviser Dress Sense and Etiquette Regulatory Authority”!

Rules, yes. Required legal processes, procedures, requirements and limitations, yes. Even social and cultural mores while assimilating to a new society [especially for relatively new immigrants in the field], yes. Behavioural Finance, yes. Ethics and morals, NO.

IMO, they are innate, unconscious, deeply embedded, and aren’t taught – they are absorbed on a daily basis, just through living life in a particular society.

In addition, as someone who has lived in 3 countries for lengthy periods [decades+], and needed to assimilate to 5-6 distinct societies, economic, and political systems [not to mention languages!], I can categorically state that what would be entirely “Ethical” behaviour in one country might be marginal or even somewhat strange in another.

Of course, given that it is an Australian test for Australian conditions, it might be seen as acceptable, but IMO, there are too many variables and too many subjective interpretations for it to be a very legitimate method of testing AR’s..."

4) Given that we are seen by the:

* Ignorant, cynical, self serving, unaccountable, "hidden agenda" driven Political Aristocracy as low hanging fruit for their electoral picking or self congratulatory manipulation; and,

* Warped, vengeful, superior, sanctimonious, over educated, ideologically driven Bureaucratic Totalitarians as uneducated, knuckle dragging, malevolent, client hypnotizing, avaricious, self serving fraudsters to be whipped, bludgeoned, and "controlled";

I suggest that you write some constructive criticism to FASEA [especially] and/or all the relevant people, whether FASEA, your Local MP, the Ministers, or ASIC.

It may surprise you, but despite outward appearances, and in my experience, most Australian official functionaries are fairly reasonable, especially when presented with substantiated facts, reasonable arguments, and constructive criticism [not to mention threats of civil disobedience, wide scale violence, and personal targeting!].

Remember, "The pen is mightier than the sword", especially in a social media driven, 24/7/365 world.

Letters and emails from 10,000 - 20,000 AR's, plus [say] 100,000 employees, families, clients, and industry executives will make a very substantial impression - and I've seen this happen. "When politicians feel the heat, they see the light!"

They don't like it when "The natives are restless", because they are a minuscule minority; all depend on our cooperation and "With the Consent of the Governed" conduct. "Democracy is not a spectator sport", and fear only goes so far...

Good luck on your next sitting!

Great post Davey

Always happy to express my opinion, loud and proud!

Unfortunately, the "Powers that be" don't ask us/me in advance how to structure things for everyone's betterment, as they have their own [usually contradictory, pecuniary, political, ideological, and self serving!] agendas; are usually grossly ignorant, and; often only get input from those "Further up the chain" whom also have their own self serving agenda.

Why would they be interested in the knowledge, opinion, and experience of those who actually do the work, "At the coal face", and are dependent on client satisfaction to be paid?
Thanks again!

Of the 1963 who took the exam, 30% or 589 candidates were resitting.
So 1374 were sitting for the first time and 69% passed - 948.
60% of the 1963 passed in total, so 1,178.
So of the 589 re-sits 230 passed. 39%
Don't think they wanted us to know that number?

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