24 October 2014

An enhanced public register of financial advisers


This media release discusses the establishment of an enhanced, industry-wide public register of financial advisers.

The Government is delivering on our commitment to establish an enhanced, industry-wide public register of financial advisers.

This register of financial advisers will enable investors, employers and ASIC to verify the credentials of financial advisers and be confident that they are appropriately qualified and experienced.

Improving transparency will help drive improvements in consumer confidence in the financial advice industry and ensure people receive advice they can trust. It is critical that Australians have unhindered access to information on their financial adviser and the company employing the adviser.

The detail and content of this register has been informed by the recommendations of an expert industry working group convened by the Government, which included relevant financial services industry stakeholders, as well as consumer and academic representatives.

The register of financial advisers will include:

  • the adviser's name, registration number, status, and experience;
  • the advisers’ qualifications and professional association memberships;
  • the adviser's licensee, previous licensees/authorised representatives and business name;
  • what product areas the adviser can provide advice on;
  • any bans, disqualifications or enforceable undertakings; and
  • details around ownership of the financial services licensee and disclosure of the ultimate parent company where applicable.

The register will be up and running by March 2015.

The register will cost about $5 million to set up and will be funded by increasing the current ASIC lodgement fee for Australian Financial Services licensees by $5 to $44. The Government believes cost recovery is an appropriate method to finance this important transparency reform.

Our goal remains to ensure that we have a robust but efficient financial services regulatory system, which is competitively neutral so that people saving for their retirement or managing financial risks through life can access high quality advice they can trust and which is also affordable.

The Government will continue to work with the industry working group and all other interested stakeholders on efficient and effective ways to keep lifting professional, ethical and educational standards across the financial advice industry.