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Financial Advisers Act change 'huge news', says Bankers Association:

Friday 30th April 2010

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The New Zealand Bankers Association is breathing huge sighs of relief that Commerce Minister Simon Power has heard industry complaints about the wide scope of the bill and the difficulty that the original deadlines presented for training finance industry staff for the new oversight regime.  

NZBA chief executive Sarah Mehrtens said Power's announcements to the INFINZ awards dinner in Auckland last night was "huge news".

"It's really good for the market," she said. "The six months extension (for training staff for the new regime) was absolutely necessary.  We're pleased to see he's listening and he's done it."

Select committee hearings on tidy-up legislation, the Financial Services Providers (Pre-Implementation Adjustments) Bill are due now to start on May 6, and Power has already indicated he expects a wide range of submissions on issues not specifically covered by the Bill but which also need adjustment to make the Financial Advisers Act work as intended.

One of the banking, legal and accounting world's biggest fears has been that the Act would impose onerous and unnecessary registration and qualification requirements on providers of financial advice to corporatioins, when the rules are aimed at improving protections and the quality of advice to unsophisticated retail investors.

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