About Good Returns  |  Advertise  |  Contact Us  |  Terms & Conditions  |  RSS Feeds Other Sites:   depositrates.co.nz  |   landlords.co.nz
Last Article Uploaded: Wednesday, April 1st, 11:05PM
Latest Headlines

Hughes prepares to saddle up

Financial Markets Authority boss Sean Hughes has, somewhat unexpectedly, announced he's only doing one three-year term in the role. Good Returns publisher Philip Macalister reflects on the FMA's early years and Hughes's performance.

Friday, July 12th 2013, 9:00AM 1 Comment

by Philip Macalister

So Sean Hughes has decided to saddle up his horse and ride out of town.

His early announcement of his decision not to do a second term as chief executive of the Financial Markets Authority has already got people writing their reviews about his performance.

As you would expect they are generally positive.

It will be interesting to see what the financial advisory sector will make of his three-year tenure in the role.

I suspect many advisers will remember him for the Cowboy ads that ran soon after the FMA was established. They were by far and away the most read and commented on stories on Good Returns in that year.

In adviser land one of the things that will be discussed, and should be debated, is the level of resources the FMA puts into policing this sector. It seems there is considerable resource and cost yet, despite reasonably heavy handed comments that advisers will be stuck off, disciplined, fined or whatever, we haven’t seen many cases of this.

Indeed we still haven’t seen an adviser appear before the Financial Advisers Disciplinary Committee yet.
It supports the contention I have made for years that advisers in New Zealand are pretty straight up. Sure standards and professionalism can be raised and that has been happening.

The FMA, and Hughes, can claim some credit for that. So can advisers.

Foundations in place
Reading the comments he made to us, and to other media, he clearly sees his role here as setting up the organisation and putting the building blocks in place.

I think he is right and that is what he has done successfully. The FMA has clearly defined what it wants to do and regularly repeats its messages so people don’t forget them.
Reading between the lines of the various interviews one can’t help thinking there is something else behind his decision. Hughes has been passionate about his role and walking away at this point is a real surprise.

Has investor confidence increased?One of the most important things he can be measured against is whether the FMA, under his guidance, has increased investor confidence and the public are better informed and more active in the market.

My take on this, based partly on anecdotal evidence, like talking to my electrician the other day, is that there hasn’t been a marked shift here.

Maybe some improvement, partly due to the end of the GFC, but not a quantum step up.

But to put that into perspective it’s not something that will happen overnight.

It’s probably not helped by events like the Mighty River Power share offer either. Fortunately for Hughes the moribund share price is not something he is responsible for, it is more of a government issue. I can tell you there are plenty of unhappy first time sharemarket investors out there.

Big black mark
Undoubtedly, and we have seen this since his announcement, the big black mark is Ross Asset Management.

I’ve debated this at length with people and still think that it was a failure by the FMA. They should have been onto DIMS, especially after ponzi schemes like Bernie Madoff in the United States and the interesting case of our own, departed, Allan Hubbard. There were enough signs, and I know, from listening to FMA people, Ross blind-sided the authority.

I think it would be unfortunate is that event is what Hughes we remembered for.

Hughes has done a far better job and raised the bar significantly from what the former head of the Securities Commission achieved. He should be applauded,

My hope is that instead of getting another Australian running our markets we get a Kiwi.

You can read Philip's blog here: http://www.goodreturns.co.nz/blog/

« Niko: Media acting without thinking on Mighty River accusationsThe one thing NZ is lacking »

Special Offers

Comments from our readers

On 4 January 2014 at 12:31 pm Ivan said:
I can't help but feel that these type of govt departments are all about being seen to be pc and highly paid bums on seats that are of no real help to anyone except the people that work in them.

Sign In to add your comment



Printable version  


Email to a friend
News Bites
Latest Comments
  • AMP partners with Paul Henry
    “Surely, this is an April Fools joke, or the AMP brand managers have never viewed this goof....”
    12 hours ago by macca
  • What is the value of CPD?
    “Gavin - maybe times have changed since I led AIA here and in Australia, but any product launches I ever paid for were for...”
    14 hours ago by dcwhyte
  • AMP partners with Paul Henry
    “Wow! Is anyone going to lay odds on how long it is before Paul Henry embarrasses AMP by saying something childish, or just...”
    14 hours ago by Giles Thorman
  • Register under review
    “This issue was identified and raised in submissions when the legislation was being drafted - and ignored. The register should...”
    17 hours ago by btw
  • What is the value of CPD?
    “What all this discussion says to me is that there seems to be a lot of emphasis on doing CPD to meet the requirements of...”
    2 days ago by Brent Sheather
Subscribe Now

Mortgage Rates Newsletter

Daily Weekly

Previous News


Most Commented On
Mortgage Rates Table

Full Rates Table | Compare Rates

Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
ANZ 6.74 5.89 5.99 6.29
ANZ Special - 5.39 5.39 5.79
ASB Bank 6.75 5.99 5.99 6.39
ASB Bank Special - 5.59 5.39 5.59
BankDirect 6.75 5.99 6.09 6.39
BankDirect Special - 5.59 5.39 5.59
BNZ - Classic - - - -
BNZ - Mortgage One 7.15 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 6.74 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 6.74 ▼5.49 ▼5.39 ▼5.55
BNZ - TotalMoney 6.74 - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Credit Union Auckland 6.70 - - -
Credit Union Baywide 6.45 5.95 5.99 -
Credit Union North 6.45 - - -
Credit Union South 5.75 - - -
eMortgage 6.04 6.15 6.69 7.19
Finance Direct 6.10 6.45 6.69 7.10
First Credit Union 6.45 - - -
General Finance 5.95 6.25 6.50 7.10
HBS Bank 6.65 5.69 5.39 5.69
HBS Special - 5.59 5.19 5.49
Heartland 6.70 7.00 7.25 7.85
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Heretaunga Building Society 6.70 5.70 5.40 -
Housing NZ Corp 6.74 5.70 ▼5.99 6.29
HSBC Premier 6.84 5.65 5.65 5.65
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - 5.29 5.29 5.29
ICBC 6.75 5.99 6.39 -
Kiwibank 6.65 5.69 6.09 6.29
Kiwibank - Capped - - - -
Kiwibank - Offset 6.55 - - -
Kiwibank Special - - ▼5.39 5.55
Liberty - - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Napier Building Society 5.80 6.00 6.70 -
Nelson Building Society 6.95 6.15 6.60 -
NZ Home Loans 6.85 6.09 6.40 6.65
Perpetual Trust 7.70 - - -
Resimac 6.59 5.92 5.95 6.04
SBS Bank 6.65 5.69 5.39 5.69
SBS Bank Special - 5.59 5.19 5.49
Silver Fern 5.95 6.10 6.55 7.05
Sovereign 6.85 5.99 6.09 6.39
Sovereign Special - 5.59 5.39 5.59
The Co-operative Bank 6.70 5.59 5.39 5.59
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
TSB Bank 6.74 5.70 5.70 6.00
TSB Special - - 5.35 5.60
Wairarapa Building Society 6.20 5.75 5.95 -
Westpac 6.59 5.99 ▼5.99 ▼5.99
Westpac - Capped rates - 6.74 6.99 -
Westpac - Offset 6.59 - - -
Westpac Special - - 5.39 5.89
Median 6.70 5.82 5.95 5.94

Last updated: 1 April 2015 10:18pm

News Quiz

Who's ceo has just received the 2015 Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEP) CEO Leadership Award in a ceremony at the UN headquarters in New York, being only the second NZ ceo chosen for the honour?


Fisher Funds

Partners Life

Fidelity Life


About Us  |  Advertise  |  Contact Us  |  Terms & Conditions  |  Privacy Policy  |  RSS Feeds  |  Letters  |  Archive  |  Toolbox
Site by PHP Developer and eyelovedesign.com