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Important week for financial services industry

Monday, July 28th 2003, 2:03PM

Last week was possibly one of the most important weeks in the financial services industry for some time.

Why? At the start of the week about 50 invited guests sat down at the Saving New Zealand forum to discuss superannuation policy. Now you might want to write this off as a bunch of white collar Welingtonians having a talkfest. But it was more important than that.

What makes it different is that the organisers, the Investment Savings and Insurance Association, had managed to get government departments, employers, unions and the pension industry together.

This session, which heard presentations from key people in the Irish and Australian savings industries, was interesting as it became clear New Zealand’s discussions on superannuation had been between politicians and the industry. The key stakeholders – New Zealanders had not taken part.

One of the similarities between Ireland and Australia were that their super policies had evolved out of partnerships, like the forum, and (particularly in Ireland’s case) it was best to sideline the politicians altogether – now that’s got appeal!

The other big one was that it took a long time for people to work out what the problem was that we are trying to solve with superannuation policy.

Making people save to ensure people have a comfortable life in retirement isn’t necessarily the Government’s role.

As Associate Finance Minister David Cunliffe points out it is not necessarily the government’s role to tell people what to do with their money –whether to save it or to spend it. (Sounds odd coming from a Labour politician – but he said it).

Cunliffe featured later in the week at the Financial Planners and Insurance Advisers conference in Rotorua where he talked about regulation of advisers.

While many listeners where ho-hum about what he said (“Is that all he’s got to say”) the underlying message was strong.

He told planners the Government is prepared to try and avoid heavy-handed regulation of the advice industry – but only if it gets it’s act together quick smart.

He also formally offered to create a partnership with the industry to achieve this.

While he didn’t put a timeline on when things had to happen, you could read between the lines that progress had to be happening by year’s end when the IMF boys come down from New York to see what we are doing.

See stories:
Adviser laws to be toughened
Saving New Zealand tricky
Focus on Saving: Towards Consensus

In other big news during the week Tower sold out of the financial planning firm Goldridge for an undisclosed sum. Goldridge is looking to expand the size of its advisory force and will, all going to plan, be one of the bigger, adviser owned businesses in New Zealand.
Tower sells Goldridge

Reserve Bank governor Alan Bollard chopped the OCR another 25 basis points, and at the same time warned about the housing market. He noted that housing inflation is already "quite strong" and that "some investors have unrealistic expectations about this."
Bollard gives a bit, but warns on housing

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AIA - Back My Build 6.19 - - -
AIA - Go Home Loans 8.74 7.14 6.75 6.39
ANZ 8.64 7.74 7.39 7.25
ANZ Blueprint to Build 7.39 - - -
ANZ Good Energy - - - 1.00
ANZ Special - 7.14 6.79 6.65
ASB Bank 8.64 7.14 6.75 6.39
ASB Better Homes Top Up - - - 1.00
Avanti Finance 9.15 - - -
Basecorp Finance 9.60 - - -
Bluestone 9.24 - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
BNZ - Classic - 7.14 6.79 6.65
BNZ - Green Home Loan top-ups - - - 1.00
BNZ - Mortgage One 8.69 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 8.69 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 8.69 7.74 7.39 7.25
BNZ - TotalMoney 8.69 - - -
CFML Loans 9.45 - - -
China Construction Bank - 7.09 6.75 6.49
China Construction Bank Special - - - -
Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - 6.79 - -
Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 8.40 6.99 6.79 6.65
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Co-operative Bank - Standard 8.40 7.49 7.29 7.15
Credit Union Auckland 7.70 - - -
First Credit Union Special - 7.45 7.35 -
First Credit Union Standard 8.50 7.99 7.85 -
Heartland Bank - Online 7.99 6.89 6.55 6.35
Heartland Bank - Reverse Mortgage - - - -
Heretaunga Building Society 8.90 7.60 7.40 -
HSBC Premier 8.59 - - -
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - - - -
ICBC 7.85 7.05 6.69 6.59
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Kainga Ora 8.64 7.74 7.35 6.99
Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - - - -
Kiwibank 8.50 7.99 7.79 7.55
Kiwibank - Offset 8.50 - - -
Kiwibank Special - 6.99 6.79 6.65
Liberty 8.59 8.69 8.79 8.94
Nelson Building Society 9.00 7.65 7.25 -
Pepper Money Advantage 10.49 - - -
Pepper Money Easy 8.69 - - -
Pepper Money Essential 8.29 - - -
SBS Bank 8.74 7.74 7.09 6.95
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
SBS Bank Special - 7.14 6.49 6.35
SBS Construction lending for FHB - - - -
SBS FirstHome Combo 6.19 6.14 - -
SBS FirstHome Combo - - - -
SBS Unwind reverse equity 9.95 - - -
Select Home Loans 9.24 - - -
TSB Bank 9.44 7.79 7.55 7.45
TSB Special 8.64 6.99 6.75 6.65
Unity 8.64 6.99 6.79 -
Unity First Home Buyer special - 6.55 6.45 -
Wairarapa Building Society 8.60 6.95 6.85 -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Westpac 8.64 ▼7.49 7.35 6.99
Westpac Choices Everyday 8.74 - - -
Westpac Offset 8.64 - - -
Westpac Special - ▼6.89 6.75 6.39
Median 8.64 7.14 6.82 6.65

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