Money Management’s top 10 stories of 2023

30 December 2023
| By Jasmine Siljic |
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As the year comes to a close, Money Management has collated the top 10 most read stories of 2023 – from super fund performance to financial advice reforms.

1. How did Australia’s largest super funds perform in FY22–23?

AustralianSuper reported returns of 8.2 per cent for its Balanced option during the 2022–23 financial year. Meanwhile, Australian Retirement Trust (ART) saw slightly higher returns of 10 per cent in its Super Savings Balanced portfolio.

2. AMP BOLR class action verdict delivered

In July 2023, the Federal Court issued its verdict in the class action case against AMP Financial Planning (AMPFP). Justice Mark Moshinsky ruled in favour of the class action group.

3. Winners of the 10th Super Fund of the Year Awards revealed

Money Management’s sister brand Super Review celebrated the 10th anniversary of the annual Super Fund of the Year Awards, which included 21 winners. This year’s top prize – the Fund of the Year award – was given to UniSuper.

4. Westpac updates on BT platform business sale

Westpac concluded its sale of the BT platform business in June this year but decided to retain and continue to invest in the business.

5. National merger to create $64bn financial services business

In September 2023, Ironbark Asset Management and Invest Blue announced plans to merge. Post-merger, the entity now has $64 billion in funds under management, trusteeship and advice, and more than 500 staff across 35 locations.

6. New look for advice documentation as SOAs scrapped

Minister for Financial Services, Stephen Jones, outlined that Statements of Advice (SOAs) will now be replaced by an advice record that clearly and concisely provides information in plain English.

7. Experience pathway passed

The experience pathway passed in Parliament on 6 September, three months after being introduced. 

“This will help to address the mess left by the last government which oversaw an industry that lost over 10,000 financial advisers since 2019. Ongoing advice fees also increased by 41 per cent between 2018 and 2021. This left Australians without access to affordable and quality financial advice,” said Jones at the time.

8. Jones unveil final QAR reforms

The minister unveiled the final Quality of Advice Review reforms in December. This saw banks, insurers and super funds added into the advice equation through a new controversial “qualified adviser” classification. 

9. Financial planner jailed nine years for $3.3m fraud

In April, former Sentinel Wealth financial planner Gavin Fineff was sentenced to a maximum jail term of nine years after pleading guilty to 12 counts of dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception, which included defrauding clients of just under $3.3 million.

10. How much should an adviser be earning in your state?

A staffing report from Hays, revealed the average pay in different states for financial planning roles. For financial planners, the highest average salary was found in Sydney at $120,000 followed by Melbourne at $110,000.

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