Australia: Superannuation, Funds Management & Financial Services - What's News - 7 April 2015

In the media

Changes to super tax needed
AIST – 2 April 2015 – The Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees believes changes need to be made to ensure tax concessions for super fund members and retirees are both fair and sustainable for all Australians. More...

Super funds to gain from Trowbridge "disruption"
MEDIA – 2 April 2015 – Proposed changes to the way financial planners who sell retail life insurance are remunerated could allow super funds to draw more members into group policies, says Rice Warner. More...

Super industry "scorecard" proposed
MEDIA – 1 April 2015 – ASFA has floated the idea of a measure of the superannuation industry's efficiency in its response to the final report of the Financial System Inquiry (FSI). More...

Policies can adjust super tax concessions
MEDIA – 1 April 2015 – The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia believes there are policies the federal government could implement promptly to adjust superannuation tax concessions. More...

Super tax breaks of greatest benefit to top 10% of earners
AIST – 1 April 2015 – The Government's tax inquiry would be an opportunity to improve the targeting of tax concessions for those at the top end of income spectrum. Recent research by AIST and Mercer has found that the top 10% of wage earners received almost $500,000 in government support through super tax concessions over a lifetime. More...

Drop unfair plan to lower pension indexation, reform super and pension assets test instead
AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL OF SOCIAL SERVICE – 1 April 2015 – The Australian Council of Social Service has issued a call to the Federal Parliament to reject the plan to lower the Indexation of pensions that would severely impact all pensioners, and instead focus on eligibility for the part-pension and reforming the unfair retirement incomes system, including superannuation tax concessions. More...

Very high superannuation account balances the starting point for tax concession discussions: new ASFA report
ASFA – 1 April 2015 – The tax treatment of very high account balances should be the starting point for discussions around adjustments to superannuation tax concessions, rather than blanket changes that impact on all members, according to a report released by the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) today. More...

Tax paper questions super concessions
MEDIA – 31 March 2015 – The government's tax discussion paper has underlined the disproportionate benefits enjoyed by higher-income earners when it comes to superannuation tax concessions. More...

FSI submissions close
MEDIA – 31 March 2015 – Public submissions on the federal government's Financial System Inquiry Final Report close today. Among the recommendations is a call for all superannuation funds to have a majority of independent directors and aligning penalties for director misconduct with those of managed investment schemes. More...

AIST Submissions
AIST – 31 March 2015 – Final Report of the Financial System Inquiry (FSI). More...

Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCAL)
AVCAL – 31 March 2015 – Financial System Inquiry final report. More...

ASFA Submissions
ASFA Submissions 30 March 2015. Response to the Financial System Inquiry Final Report. 23 March 2015. Consultation on draft versions of Superannuation Data and Payment Standards schedules. More...

Tax inquiry is a timely opportunity to ensure super is fair and sustainable
AIST – 30 March 2015 – The Government's Tax Inquiry is a timely opportunity to examine the taxation arrangements for the superannuation to ensure they are fair and sustainable for both current and future generations. More...

FPA welcomes launch of ASIC's adviser register
FPA- 31 March 2015 – According CEO of the FPA, the register, which is consumer-friendly and accessible via ASIC's Money Smart site, will enable consumers to easily identify all licensed financial planners who have an agreed set of credentials. The new register contains more than 19,000 appointments. More...

Tax reform must achieve consensus on super settings
ISA – 30 March 2015 – Industry Super Australia has welcomed the release of the tax discussion paper, pointing to the need for super taxation settings to be fairer and more efficient in the course of underpinning the private savings needed to address the ageing population. More...

Tax discussion paper recognises role of superannuation at the heart of investment and the economy
ASFA – 30 March 2015 – The inclusion of superannuation in the tax discussion paper process is a necessary and important step in the maturing of Australia's superannuation system and tax system. Through the call for community involvement, and the key principles for a well-designed tax system – equity, efficiency and simplicity – the paper lays out a robust framework for reviewing the system. More...

FSC Statement on the Tax White Paper
FSA – 30 March 2015 – The FSC has welcomed the Tax White Paper as a "long awaited review of Australia's tax system which must be supported by business and the broader community". CEO of the FSC said the tax review must be thorough, considered and everything should be on the table. More... More...

Life insurance report fails to tackle root cause of poor advice: Conflicted remuneration
ISA – 27 March 2015 – Deputy Chief Executive of Industry Super Australia says conflicted remuneration structures are the primary cause of poor advice in Australia, featuring in every major advice scandal of the past decade. If allowed to remain, they will continue to undermine the quality of advice and insurance outcomes for clients. More...

Busting superannuation tax concessions myths
ASFA – 27 March 2015 – The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) has released a report that busts some of the most common myths cited when it comes to superannuation tax concessions. More...

Trowbridge releases final report: Review on Retail Life Insurance Advice
MEDIA – 27 March 2015 – Initiated by the FSC and the AFA, this was designed as an independent review following the ASIC retail life insurance research. It contains eleven recommendations, six of which are policy-oriented. The other five concern implementation and a final recommendation to review the efficacy of the proposed reforms after five years. More... More... More...

Research report: Busting superannuation tax concession myths
ASFA – 27 March 2015 – Released ahead of the tax issues paper due out next week, the analysis uses facts and figures to debunk some of the commonly repeated claims made about superannuation tax concessions that are misleading or incorrect. More...

Re:think – Tax discussion paper – Better system; better Australia
TREASURY – 27 March 2015 – This paper is intended to start a national conversation on tax reform and invites submissions from the public. More...

Review of Retail Life Insurance Advice
TREASURY – 26 March 2015 – The Government welcomes the release of the Review of Retail Life Insurance Advice, chaired by John Trowbridge, which makes a significant and constructive contribution to improving the quality of advice and outcomes for consumers. The Government is giving close consideration to these issues in the course of responding to the Financial System Inquiry (FSI). More...

Australia's Tobin tax: arguments and evidence
THE AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE – 26 March 2015 – A tax on financial transactions, or "Tobin" tax, could protect superannuation investors, improve the operation of Australia's capital markets and provide a source of tax revenue worth over $1 billion per year. More...

New research shows diversification and growth can help retirees' super last longer
ASFA – 25 March 2015 – Portfolio diversification and a greater allocation to growth assets are likely to help retirees make their superannuation last longer, at a time when Australians are living longer than ever before, according to new research from the ASFA and State Street Global Advisors (SSgA). More...

Professional standards of financial advisers
TREASURY – 25 March 2015 – The Government is releasing a consultation paper and calling for submissions on ways to lift the professional standards of financial advisers. Two important inquiries – the Financial System Inquiry and an inquiry by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services (PJC) – have recommended reform in this area. More...

The future of retirement income
ASFA /STATE STREET GLOBAL ADVISORS – 25 March 2015 – Released ahead of ASFA's Investment Interchange, the report found that retirees with a defensive portfolio (75% cash/fixed income and 25% Australian equities) should reasonably expect to be able to draw down on their superannuation until the age of 90, taking into account receipt of a part Age Pension. More...

Financial adviser standards consultation: Lifting the professional, ethical and education standards in the financial services industry
TREASURY – 25 March 2015 – Treasury has published a Consultation Paper in response to proposals by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services' inquiry. The paper discusses: how standards will be lifted and maintained at a specified minimum level; how minimum standards will be monitored and enforced; and mechanisms for the ongoing professionalisation of the industry. Closing date for submissions: 7 May 2015. More...

Regulators powerless on "bank bundling"
MEDIA – 24 March 2015 – The prudential and corporate regulators lack the power to penalise banks that "bundle" superannuation with other services, argues Industry Super Australia (ISA). More...

ASFA Toolbox: ASFA Action
24 March 2015. ASFA puts plaintiff law firms on notice regarding insurance claims process. APRA letter to trustees on managing conflicts of interest. APRA letter to trustees regarding deferral of reporting standard SRS 534.0. ASIC and APRA letter to superannuation trustees that are dual-regulated entities. New chairperson for SCT needed. More...

Consumers lacking legal protection from banks' super deals
ISA – 23 March 2015 – Legal advice provided by Arnold Bloch Leibler has confirmed that regulators have no power to seek a civil penalty for breach of section 68A of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 2003 (Cth), which makes it unlawful for banks to offer business banking deals and other discounts to persuade employers to switch their employees' superannuation contributions into bank-owned super funds. More...

Reminder: CP 228 Collective action by investors: Update to RG 128
Comments close 20 April 2015. This consultation paper seeks feedback from institutional investors, companies, listed managed investment schemes and other interested parties on our proposal to update our guidance in Regulatory Guide 128 Collective action by institutional investors (RG 128). A draft updated version of RG 128 is available. More...

Murray Report: Consultation process
The Government is consulting on the Inquiry's recommendations before making any decisions, and is calling for written submissions from all stakeholders. The deadline for submissions is 31 March 2015. More...


Munro & Anor v Munro & Anor [2015] QSC 61 (Binding nominations)
SUPERANNUATION – BENEFITS – MATTERS AFFECTING ENTITLEMENT TO AND PAYMENT OF – OTHER MATTERS – where deceased was member of self managed superannuation fund – where deceased purported to nominate trustee of his deceased estate as a binding death benefit nomination for the purpose of the trust deed – whether trust deed imported requirements of reg 6.17A Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Regulations 1994 (Cth) – whether nomination by the deceased of the trustee of his deceased estate satisfied reg 6.22 and the relevant clause of the trust deed as the nomination of his legal personal representative – whether death benefit nomination form signed by deceased is binding on the trustee of the fund. More...




Treasury Laws Amendment (2015 Measures No. 1) Regulation 2015 (SLI 39/2015)
30 March 2015 Registered. Commencement 31 March 2015 Schedules 2 and 3 – The day after this instrument is registered. 31 March 2015 Schedule 1, Part 2 – The day after this instrument is registered. 1 July 2015 Schedule 1, Part 1 and 31 March 2015 Sections 1 to 4. This regulation amends various regulations to prepare the Income Tax Regulations 1936 for sunsetting and gives superannuation funds the option to either report the amount of superannuation co-contributions and low income superannuation contributions received during a reporting period separately or as a single aggregated amount. More...

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