Royal Commissioner Kenneth Hayne has questioned whether the industry superannuation funds ‘fox in the henhouse” advertisements complied with the sole purpose test or was likely to benefit the members of industry superannuation funds.
Commissioner Hayne raised the questions after hearing testimony from AustralianSuper chief executive, Ian Silk as part of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services industry.
In doing so, Commissioner Hayne said he should not be interpreted as expressing a position on the status of industry funds expenditure on the advertising.
However, he said that it appeared that a payment had made for a form of political communication so as to influence parliamentarians who made public policy.
Commissioner Hayne said the advertisement could be perceived as being directed to persuading those politicians and that superannuation fund members had undertaken payment for political communication.
He said the question became whether this could or could not be in the best interests of members.