Australia: Superannuation & Funds Management - What's News - 2 July 2014

Last Updated: 6 July 2014
Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2016

In the media

FOFA wind-back must be shelved following Senate call for Royal Commission
ISA – 27 June 2014 – The report of the Senate Committee inquiry into ASIC's handling of the Commonwealth Bank Financial Planning scandal – which has recommended a Royal Commission be held into the matter – warrants an immediate halt to proposed changes to financial advice laws. More...

Senate recommends Royal Commission
MEDIA – 26 June 2014 – A Senate committee report has recommended a Royal Commission into a string of advice failures at CBA dealer group Commonwealth Financial Planning as well as ASIC's handling of the matter. The commission is the most notable of the report's 61 recommendations. More...

ATO encourages employers, self-managed super funds to prepare for SuperStream
ATO – 26 June 2014 – The ATO is encouraging employers to prepare for the introduction of SuperStream which will change the way they make superannuation contributions in the future. In cooperation with their service provider or default fund, employers can opt-in to use SuperStream from as early as 1 July 2014. More...

Retail funds also guilty of "Compare the Pair" vagueness
MEDIA – 26 June 2014 – BT and ANZ may need to follow Industry Super Australia (ISA) in clarifying the language of their superannuation advertising campaigns, following a ruling by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) over use of the term 'average' in reference to super. More...

Open letter to Clive Palmer to help save low income super scheme
AIST – 25 June 2014 – More than 30 prominent signatories from the superannuation industry, business, academia, women's organisations and policy and community groups have signed an open letter calling on Mr Clive Palmer to help save the Low Income Superannuation Contribution (LISC) scheme.

ASIC urged to review "orphan" commissions
MEDIA – 24 June 2014 – Industry Super Australia (ISA) has urged ASIC to review the government's extension of the grandfathering rules – particularly when it comes to "orphan" commissions that it claims are being retained by product providers. More...

Listed firms overpaying for underwriting: ACSI
MEDIA – 24 June 2014 – Companies are paying more in rights issue underwriting fees than benchmark modelling suggests they should, a new report has found. An Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI) titled Underwriting of Rights Issues examined 63 underwritten issues conducted by ASX300 companies between 2010 and 2012, and compared the amount they paid for underwriting against a benchmark value. More...

Industry Super Australia agrees to change comparative advertising
ASIC – 24 June 2014 – Industry Super Australia will change its super choice advertising campaign "Compare the pair" in response to concerns raised by ASIC. More...

"Compare the Pair" campaign will continue to inform consumers about Industry SuperFunds
ISA - 24 June 2014 – Australian consumers will still be able to "Compare the Pair" to look at the performance of super funds. Following a co-operative review with the regulator, ASIC, ISA volunteered to add a spoken as well as written disclaimer, and make more prominent the details around which retail super funds are being compared to Industry SuperFunds in the future. More...

New internal disputes resolution system could stem FOS disputes
MEDIA – 23 June 2014 – A new internal disputes resolution system has launched in Australia and it could stop disagreements reaching FOS, saving the industry substantial sums of money. More...

Cormann moves to impose FOFA changes
MEDIA – 20 June 2014 - Announcing the changes today, Cormann made clear that the Coalition had explicitly supported the introduction of a statutory best interest duty for financial advisers and a ban on conflicted remuneration or commissions which distorted investment advice. More...

Wind-back of FOFA protections still threatens future of financial advice industry and older Australians' assets and income
MEDIA – 20 June 2014 – COTA Australia still fears for the future of an independent, professional financial advice industry in Australia after the Federal Government indicated it will proceed with most of its legislation to water down consumer protections provided by the Future of Financial Advice (FOFA) legislation passed by the last parliament. More...

Senate Committee recommends FOFA amendments should proceed
APH – 20 June 2014 – The Senate Committee reviewing the amendments to the Future of Financial Advice (FOFA) reforms has recommended that the Corporations Amendment (Streamlining of Future of Financial Advice) Bill 2014 be passed by parliament. The Committee has recommended greater clarity on the best interest duty and other related obligations, and the implementation around the provisions governing conflicted remuneration. See the Committee's report here.

Conflicted remuneration should be defined in law
MEDIA – 18 June 2014 – The SMSF Professionals' Association of Australia (SPAA) has claimed that explanatory statements dealing with conflicted remuneration and general advice would have little effect in practice and need to be addressed via legislation. More...

ASIC releases information sheet on super fees and cost disclosure
MEDIA – 17 June 2014 – ASIC have released an information sheet on fee and cost disclosure requirements for superannuation trustees. The requirements are part of the Government's Stronger Super reforms which start 1 July 2014, and must be met for both superannuation products and managed investment schemes. More...

FOFA: Caveats and loopholes no substitute for ironclad consumer protections
ISA – 20 June 2014 – Industry Super Australia (ISA) has called on the government to take the prudent approach and shelve their plans to reduce consumer protections in financial advice. The current future of financial advice (FOFA) laws provide: an ironclad "best interests" test and an iron-clad ban on kickbacks paid to financial planners. More...

ASIC extends super fund fee disclosure
MEDIA – 18 June 2014 – ASIC has extended its facilitative approach for super fund fee and cost requirements to 1 July 2015, ahead of the Stronger Super start date of 1 July 2014. ASIC released Information Sheet 197 Fee and cost disclosure requirements for superannuation trustees yesterday. More...

ASIC releases website disclosure rules
MEDIA – 17 June 2014 – ASIC has released guidance to assist super funds and their trustees with the disclosure of information on their websites ahead of the 1 July Stronger Super start date, under section 29QB of the Supervision Industry (Supervision) Act 1993. More...

Corporations Amendment (Streamlining of Future of Financial Advice) Bill [Provisions] Report 2014
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA – 16 June 2014 – This report covers FOFA reforms – objectives; best interests duty; scaled advice; modified best interests obligations; conflicted remuneration and opt-in requirement and fee disclosure. Dissenting Report by Labor Senators. Full report- ( PDF 1884KB)

What ASIC expects of directors: speech
ASIC – 24 June 2014 – By Greg Medcraft, Chairman, Australian Securities and Investments Commission to the Australian Institute of Company Directors Lunch. More...

FOFA amendments: Corporations Amendment (Streamlining of Future of Financial Advice) Bill 2014 [Provisions] Report
The Senate Economics Committee has recommended that the Government's Bill to amend FOFA be passed. The committee recommends that the Explanatory Memorandum include a paragraph that clearly and unambiguously spells out the best interests obligations – 961B(1) and (2), 961G, 961J and 961H of the Corporations Act – and the level of consumer protection they provide. More...

APRA: Final reporting standards for superannuation – June 2013
APRA – 20 June 2014 – Each final reporting form and instructions are provided with the relevant final reporting standard as a single PDF document. Reporting forms are also provided in Excel format. See here.

APRA: FAQs about the reporting framework for superannuation
APRA – 17 June 2014 – APRA updated its FAQs about the reporting framework for superannuation. More...

ASIC: Information Sheet 197 – Fee and cost disclosure requirements for superannuation trustees
ASIC – 17 June 2014 – This clarifies ASIC's expectations on the calculation of indirect costs and how performance and advice fees should be disclosed. ( INFO 197) More...

Lodgment of statements by superannuation providers in relation to superannuation plans
Lodgment of statements by superannuation providers in relation to superannuation plans (other than self managed superannuation funds) for each financial year ended 30 June in accordance with the Taxation Administration Act 1953. This instrument describes the lodgment of Member Contributions Statements. Mor...



Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (Green Army Programme) Regulation 2014 [SLI 2014 No. 103]
This regulation amends the Superannuation Guarantee
(Administration) Regulations 1993 and the Taxation
Administration Regulations 1976 to ensure that superannuation is not payable by Green Army service providers to Green Army Programme participants and prescribes that Green Army allowance payments are subject to withholding for tax purposes. (Registered 27 June 2014) More...

ASIC Class Order [CO 14/509]
This class order clarifies the requirement under section 29QB of the Act that superannuation websites must be kept up to date at all times. (Registered 26 June 2014 / To Be Ceased 1 October 2024) More...

Bills Progress

Corporations Amendment (Streamlining of Future of Financial Advice) Bill 2014
House of Representatives, 18 June 2014 Recommendations:

  • the Explanatory Memorandum (EM) to the Bill include a paragraph that clearly and unambiguously spells out the best interests obligations – 961B(1) and (2), 961G, 961J and 961H – and the level of consumer protection they provide
  • the government consider closely how these separate obligations work together and whether any further strengthening is required to ensure that a provider cannot circumvent these best interests obligations
  • the EM make clear that it is not the government's intention to reintroduce commissions.


ASIC Class Order [CO 14/541

This class order exempts RSE licensees from disclosure obligations in section 29QC of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 until 1 July 2015. (Registered 13 June 2014) More...

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