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AFA qualification bar stays at level 5

A review of the qualification framework for financial advisers has recommended no change to the minimum standard for authorised financial advisers (AFAs) – for now.

Monday, November 12th 2012, 6:49AM

by Niko Kloeten

As part of its mandate as the body in charge of the industry’s qualifications, The Skills Organisation (formerly ETITO) recently conducted a survey of financial industry participants including financial advisers.

One of the aspects being reviewed was whether to lift the minimum qualification for AFAs, the National Certificate in Financial Services Level 5, which was developed by The Skills Organisation.

The results of the review haven’t been publicly released but according to Jenny Campbell, professional development manager at the Professional Advisers Association (PAA), the decision has been made to keep the minimum at level 5.

Campbell, who was one of a number of industry professionals consulted for the review, welcomed the standard being kept at level 5 for now.

Both she and Insurance Brokers Association of New Zealand (IBANZ) chief executive Gary Young had campaigned against lifting it to level 6, she told the PAA’s ‘Big Day Out’ in Auckland on Friday.

“The bureaucrats and academics wanted to raise level 5 to level 6 but Gary Young and I were both on the committee and we argued very strongly that didn’t need to happen,” she said.

“Level 5 is completely appropriate for most advisers; the good news is that they listened to us.  There is a review underway on making it more relevant and revising the content but for not it’s staying at level 5.”

Campbell told Good Returns the insurance section of the qualification needed some work and the priority was to improve that first.

The Skills Organisation couldn’t be reached to confirm the result of the review.

Niko Kloeten can be contacted at niko@goodreturns.co.nz

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