ASIC probed on ‘why not litigate’ future

The corporate watchdog has said it would be looking at its enforcement settings as its priorities has changed but that it intended to be an active litigant if needed.

That Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) was probed by a parliamentary committee on whether it would continue its “why not litigate” regime following the commencement of its new chair, Joe Longo.

In his opening statement, Longo said the commission was entering a new phase of its enforcement and regulatory work as it was finalising enforcement actions arising from the Hayne Royal Commission.

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Longo was asked whether ASIC’s approach to enforcement would change given his new role.

“For my part one of the things I’m working with the other commissioners is what our enforcement settings should be in the next couple of years because our priorities have changed,” he said.

“Our commitment to enforcement will not change but the critical question is what enforcement, what cases do you run, what investigations do you launch – those are the critical questions. And then I can reassure the committee we intend to be an active litigant in furtherance of those objectives.”

ASIC deputy chair, Sarah Court, noted that when deciding on what action to take from its toolbox – including infringement notices, undertakings, other new powers ASIC had recently been given, criminal proceedings, and civil litigation – the commission needed to make sure the action was proportionate and that it needed to be an efficient and timely use of its resources.

Responding to this, Labor Senator Deborah O’Neill pointed to instances when ASIC did not go ahead with court cases as cost was a prohibitive factor and that this did not meet community expectations.

ASIC deputy chair, Karen Chester, said the commission had been using “express investigations”.

“An effective regulator means using all the toolkit but when we are we use it in the least cost way. Express investigations have resulted in a reduction in  cost for the entities involved in 70% of legal fees,” she said.

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Hayne will be forever remembered for his Why not litigate edict. A real lightening rod that set the ASIC lefties into a frenzy, the green light that allowed them to wield the sword over arbitration and discussion based outcomes, creating the mess we are in and will be for years to come.

Hayne will forever be remembered for being given carte blanche powers to make meaningful reforms, and then choosing to impose legalistic bureaucracy instead.

90% of the problems in financial advice could be removed by banning vertical integration, and changing the licensing model to individual registration. Unfortunately he failed (or chose not to) see the forest for the trees. He prescribed a solution that benefits his legal colleagues far more than it benefits consumers.

100% agree.
Hayne totally failed (or was influenced) to address the Elephant In Advice = Vertical Integration.
Had Hayne banned Vertical Integration he would have truely laid a platform to avoid conflicts and reduce the useless disclosures that try to make Vertically Integrated Advice smell better.
It never works.
Hayne, you blew it big time !!!!

I tend to agree that Hayne was a complete failure.
Imagine, spending close to $100,000,000 and not even finding out that Vertical Integration might be the cause of many problems - just an amazing effort.
Perhaps it is not his fault - he just simply believed the story placed in front of him?
ASIC and Treasury - corruption or incompetence I'm not sure - but Hayne certainly fail to investigate - that much is very clear.

senile old man. lawyer. judge. only had a bachelor's degree (AQF7). past his use-by date. expired. a has been.

most financial planners have a grad dip AQF 8 or higher (higher award than a bachelor's) and an ethics exam.

most lawyers do 10 hours of CPD in NSW. ALL FINANCIAL PLANNERS even accountants do 40 hours of CPD per year.

compare the pair.

Hayne not only FAILED, but he also BLEW it big time. should get a refund on the fees paid to him by the taxpayer.


cost to the taxpayer $170,000,000 so $70,000,000 more than your figure.

Hayne, TOTAL FAIL>>>>>

P.S. countdown to 5,000 has begun :-)

You might be right - I remembers $70,000,000 somewhere - that's right, that is the amount ASIC wanted to put a few staff in the 4 Banks and AMP.
Now that we can see the results, $70,000,000 is the cost to eliminate the last remaining competition to Industry Super - and paid for by the Liberals.
Josh and Scotty need to go.

Litigation could be the cheapest action for ASIC because if they win, the other party would be up for costs. However if ASIC loose it is a disaster, they are shown to be incorrect, and it costs a fortune. So perhaps ASIC has lost too many cases and have decided to save money and restore their image at the same time. Also it is much more simple if you control the entire process - just ask a dictator!

It doesn’t cost ASIC, it costs Advisers as we pay the legal bills and All ASIC costs.
ASIC wanted to appeal again the Wagyu & Shiraz case after losing twice.
Freaking ASIC morons trying to look tough post RC when they were shown to be so lacking with the banks.
Imagine if anyone every looked closely at their Industry Fund dealings.
Corrupt, useless ASIC.

the ASIC was so stupid that the RBA governor had to warn them and let them know that now (during covid) was not a good time to restrict credit flow or increase uncertainty with responsible lending laws which are out of kilter with the rest of the world and is currently pending legislative reform.

don't expect anything from Joe Longo. who likes to play on his bongo. at least he doesn't have any complicated tax affairs to resolve moving from perth to melbourne.

remember socialist like to spend other people's money. not their own.

Fuuny how a corrupt ASIC don't have the same mentality on the large end of town, such as union super rorts or the likes of Macquarie Bank NUIX fiasco... too busy bullying the little guys and working out ways to make our life impossible.

there aren't that many competent people at ASIC. you can hardly blame them. it needs a total cleanout.

although I do not have many expectations for Joe Longo who likes to play his bongo. I think he himself is going to be dismayed at the sheer incompetence that exists across the organization.

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