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Second AFA loses licence

Auckland-based adviser and former newspaper columnist Andrew Robinson has become the second authorised financial adviser (AFA) to be stripped of his authorisation.

Tuesday, January 15th 2013, 6:24PM

by Niko Kloeten

The Financial Markets Authority is investigating Robinson after receiving a complaint from a client who placed money with his company Strategic Planning Group.

“As at 21 December 2012 FMA cancelled Mr Robinson's authorisation as an authorised financial adviser and he ceased to be registered as a financial services provider,” the regulator said in a statement.  “Mr Robinson is co-operating with FMA's inquiries.”

His authorisation was cancelled barely a month after he became an AFA on November 20 last year and only four days after David Ross, who is suspected of running a Ponzi scheme, became the first adviser to lose his AFA status on December 17. 

An English immigrant who moved to New Zealand in the early 2000s, Robinson wrote columns in the business section of the Sunday Star-Times between 2003 and 2004.

He owns a one-third shareholding in Strategic Planning Group, while directors Mark Turnock (a finance broker) and Lisa Cocks (an insurance adviser) each hold a one-third stake; Robinson ceased being a director of the company in December 2011.

Asked if anyone else associated with Strategic Planning Group was being investigated, an FMA spokesman said “our investigation is ongoing”.

Robinson had been using the Prospero client administration system, which is provided by Grosvenor Financial Services.

Grosvenor head of business services David Beattie said the company had cancelled its agency agreement with Robinson.

“He’s been using our system for a number of years but he’s been very hard to get hold of for the last year or two,” he said.  

Beattie said Grosvenor had been contacted by a number of Robinson’s clients who had been unable to reach him.

“The fact they are trying to get hold of him through us is not a good sign.”

He said Robinson had been in the UK looking after his mother, who is understood to have been battling cancer.

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

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