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The Wrap: Minister acknowledges small firms

A look back at a week in which the new Commerce Minister acknowledged concerns, and one insurer received a big boost.

Friday, November 3rd 2017, 2:00PM

by Susan Edmunds

We started this short week with a conversation with new Commerce Minister Kris Faafoi.

He’s still getting his feet under the desk but acknowledged that he was aware of concerns about the Financial Services Legislation Amendment Bill, which he’ll be tasked with overseeing.

The bill is working its way through parliament and had been set to become law by mid-next year.

But Faafoi said he’d been told some small advice firms were worried the new law favoured the big end of town – and he wants to explore that concern.

That will be welcome news to some independent advisers, who’ve complained about big providers capturing the law review process.

Two high-profile conferences happened this week – the Responsible Investment Conference and Binu Paul’s second fintech get-together.

On Wednesday, Kiwi Wealth put out a white paper that said, even though New Zealand fund managers have flocked to responsible investment over the past year, much of that has relied on negative screens, rather than a deep dive into ESG factors.

It says that’s potentially in breach of their fiduciary duty to clients.

Advisers I spoke to for the story broadly agreed, although one said the most important thing could be to make sure that no one was taken in by "green-washing" - where funds are made to look more responsible than they really are.

Pathfinder chief executive John Berry said managers should have to disclose more details about their strategies, so investors know what they are buying when they put their money into a fund.

The big news in the insurance space for the week was Fidelity Life’s investment from the NZ Super Fund. The fund, which was set up to cater for New Zealand’s future pension needs, is taking a 41% stake.

Chief executive Nadine Tereora said the money - $100 million, of which $75m is new capital – would be used for innovation and development. The company is preparing new products to bring to the market next year. 

It’s a vote of confidence for the New Zealand-owned insurance firm to get such a large investment from the fund.

Coming up
No change is expected at the official cash rate announcement next week, although the outlook further into the future is perhaps less certain than it was.

There are a number of professional development opportunities through the week. Find details here.

Tags: Fidelity Life responsible investing

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    “Tactical move by CIGNA and looks like they have a lot of bench strength now in sales, underwriting and product / pricing...”
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    “Never happen. The Greens are such an aspirational bunch. Must all the weed. They 'want' all sorts of unlikely things...”
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    “I dare say Cigna just got that extra grunt it's been looking for....”
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AIA 4.55 3.19 3.19 3.49
AIA Special - 2.69 2.69 2.99
ANZ 4.44 3.15 3.25 ▼3.39
ANZ Special - ▼2.55 ▼2.69 ▼2.79
ASB Bank 4.45 3.19 3.19 3.49
ASB Bank Special - 2.69 2.69 2.99
Bluestone 4.44 4.44 4.44 4.44
BNZ - Classic - 2.65 2.69 2.99
BNZ - Mortgage One 5.15 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 4.60 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 4.55 3.25 3.29 3.59
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BNZ - TotalMoney 4.55 - - -
China Construction Bank 4.49 4.70 4.80 4.95
China Construction Bank Special - 2.65 2.65 2.80
Credit Union Auckland 5.45 - - -
Credit Union Baywide 5.65 4.75 4.75 -
Credit Union South 5.65 4.75 4.75 -
First Credit Union Special 5.85 3.35 3.85 -
Heartland 3.95 2.89 2.97 3.39
Heartland Bank - Online - - - -
Heretaunga Building Society 4.99 4.35 4.45 -
HSBC Premier 4.49 2.60 2.65 2.80
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - - - -
ICBC 3.99 2.58 2.68 2.79
Kainga Ora 4.43 3.29 3.39 3.85
Kiwibank 3.40 3.40 3.54 4.00
Kiwibank - Capped - - - -
Kiwibank - Offset - - - -
Kiwibank Special 3.40 2.65 2.79 3.25
Liberty 5.69 - - -
Nelson Building Society 4.95 3.45 3.49 -
Pepper Essential 4.79 - - -
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The Co-operative Bank - Standard 4.40 ▼3.19 ▼3.25 ▼3.49
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TSB Special 4.54 ▼2.55 2.69 2.99
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Westpac 4.59 4.15 4.09 4.49
Westpac - Offset 4.59 - - -
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Median 4.55 3.19 3.22 3.39

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