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Older investors a key concern: Commission

New Zealanders are vulnerable to poor investment decisions when they reach retirement with a lump sum in their pockets – but getting them to pay for financial advice remains a hurdle, the Retirement Commissioner says.

Friday, August 29th 2014, 6:00AM 7 Comments

by Susan Edmunds

David Boyle, general manager of funds management at ANZ, has been hired by the commission to look at the needs of New Zealanders aged over 50.

Commissioner Diane Maxwell said that demographic was a key concern.

She said the industry had traditionally been a bit like a Hollywood movie that ends with a wedding. “Actually that’s just the start. We talk a lot about accumulation and invest  a lot in getting people saving to get to that [retirement] point but then we walk away.”

But she said investors who had reached 65 and were drawing down their savings were at an important time when they needed good advice and products. “One of the worries is seeing more people losing money as did the David Ross investors. You’re at a vulnerable moment, you can’t get that money back if you lose it. If you’ve stopped working or are working part time and your income has dropped, if you lose it you can’t recover. Decisions at that point are critical.”

It was not just a question of needing more financial advisers, she said. “People need to know what they don’t know and be able to make sense of what advisers are telling them. Then you need a good, strong adviser base that operates with integrity and is well regulated.”

But she said the public would need to understand the value of advice and be prepared to pay for it. “We still have a situation here where people don’t want to pay for advice. They’ll pay $300 to get a haircut but for advice there’s a perception that they’ll get it free.”

People also often did not know what to ask when they were with a financial adviser, she said. “If people who were clients of David Ross had been equipped with key questions, such as will you send me statements? How can I check you out? They might have identified an issue. People need to know what they don’t know and be able to make sense of what an adviser is telling them.”

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Comments from our readers

On 29 August 2014 at 8:41 am Clayton Coplestone said:
Great appointment - well done
On 29 August 2014 at 3:20 pm Bernard McCrea said:
Congratulations David on your appointment. A good appointment for the Retirement Commissioner's office.
On 29 August 2014 at 4:44 pm Truman Macarthy said:
Well done David - the right man for a great role. You've come a log way since scotch eggs at Postbank Hereford St. Congrats.
On 29 August 2014 at 7:35 pm Austin Fisher said:
Very much one of the good guys. Congratulations David.
On 30 August 2014 at 4:30 pm Andy Davies said:
This aricle is not about David, but a word of warning for the over 50s of which i am one, the we need to keep a close eye on others that advise and invest our money.
If they invest it badly, hay, they dont loose out, so yep, get advise, pay for it, and they watch and be an active investor.
On 31 August 2014 at 12:02 pm Barry Read said:
I told you if you got a hair cut you'd get a better job!!! Seriously though well done. Couldn't think of a better man for the job. A few better woman maybe, but not a better man.

Ciao B
On 3 September 2014 at 7:49 pm Al Donald said:
Congratulations Dave, Perfect man for the job, well done. The Boys.

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Heartland Bank - Online - - - -
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