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Financial Advice NZ: Focus on outcome, not time it took

Financial Advice NZ says the new Financial Services Council code of conduct is a good example of how the industry needs to take responsibility for its own outcomes.

Monday, September 10th 2018, 6:00AM

by Susan Edmunds

The code was revealed at the association’s conference in Auckland last week  - it was well received although some commentators questioned why it had taken two years to produce.

Many of those the FSC represents are now involved in the FMA and Reserve Bank’s inquiry into the conduct of life insurers and banks.

Financial Advice NZ chief executive Katrina Shanks said anything that was designed to be customer-centric and improve the outcomes for consumers would be positive. ”Any move in that direction is  a good move.”

The more the industry put the customer in the middle of decision-making, the sooner it would build confidence and trust.

“I like the ethical framework of the code. You ca be regulated to the hilt but it comes down to ethics, that’s what makes the difference to the outcome to the consumer.”

She said she would focus less on the length of time it took to produce and more the fact it had been launched and the FSC was standing by it.

Whether advisers would be affected would depend on how the ode was delivered, she said. The insurers and fund managers are yet to develop a number of workstreams underneath the code, she said, and that would determine how their businesses interacted with advisers.

The combination of the code with the Financial Advice NZ quality service mark, which is yet to be launched, would be powerful, she said. “We have to take responsibility for the outcomes of our industry not rely on regulation and legislation to do it for us.”

Commerce Minister Kris Faafoi said it was good to see industry-led initiatives that promoted good conduct and a customer-focused culture.

He told the FSC conference that financial advice was vital. “Financial advice plays an important role in helping New Zealanders navigate the complex world of financial products and retirement planning.”

Tags: Financial Advice New Zealand FSC Kris Faafoi

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