The Financial Advisers Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) has universities on standby as it takes its time in rolling out the proposed reforms, causing some distress among course coordinators.
While most educational institutions tend to stay 12 months ahead of the industry, they’ve been frustrated by the lack of information provided by the regulatory body, according to associate professor at Deakin University, Adrian Raftery.
Raftery told Money Management that he was particularly worried about what FASEA’s changes will do to their graduate diploma given the lack of technical financial planning subjects incorporated into the postgraduate qualification.
He said normally, graduate diplomas are comprised of eight subjects, two of which must be in line with the Tax Practitioners Board’s requirements of income tax and commercial law, and now three which must be FASEA’s proposed ethics, behavioural finance and financial services regulations courses.
Raftery added that any financial planning diploma requires some introduction to financial planning and a capstone course, which brings the total number of courses to seven, leaving one course left to fit in superannuation, retirement planning, estate planning, insurance, investments and portfolio courses.
“We’re trying to basically fit five subjects into one, which really isn’t very ideal at all, and there’s very few technical financial planning subjects incorporated into those eight subjects,” he said.
Raftery said he was keen to get the ball rolling and up the standards of advisers coming out of the woodwork, but a stall in enrolments as potential advisers await FASEA’s announcement might see an influx of students in later years, which has him worried it will put a massive strain on university resources.
“I’m fearful of courses being run by casuals who may have a masters qualification or may not, but they’re not full time academics,” he said. “So, staffing resources of appropriately qualified academics is going to be an issue in 2023.”
Despite reservations, Raftery said the university already has gears in motion for what’s to come from FASEA and awaits an announcement eagerly.