The new chief executive of the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA), Stephen Glenfield, today sought to reassure planners that the Authority had taken account of the extensive feedback it received in the consultation period of its various controversial reforms.
Speaking at the Financial Planning Association (FPA) Professionals Congress today, in a speech he described as “a time to speak to you, rather than just listen”, Glenfield said that he believed the controversial positions reached by FASEA were “balanced and workable”.
He reiterated the Authority’s line that it had considered much feedback in the consultation process. He pointed to clarification around recognition of prior learning, which many planners still express confusion over, and simplified pathways as evidence of this.
Glenfield also said that the exam requirements released last week took into account consultation feedback, with the final exam now three-and-a-half hours, with resits available and open book as far as the statutory sections were concerned. FASEA would also publish curriculum information, recommended readings lists, and a practice exam following consultation.
Glenfield also reminded listeners that much of what FASEA was rolling out was legislatively mandated rather than just its own preference.
He also urged planners to consider all the information the Authority had released, as “taking a piecemeal approach could result in a skewed view” of what its reforms required and were intended to achieve.
Glenfield said that importantly, the reforms were in line with the best interests of the consumer but that he equally believed that the changes were achievable for existing financial advisers, pointing out that they were in line with what was required of other professional industries in Australia.