ASIC's guide to being good

Published 2 September 2021

Every year the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) releases its corporate plan, looking ahead five years and giving us an insight into which rocks it will be looking under to find the creepy crawlies that periodically infest the financial services industry.

In its latest plan, ASIC looks ahead to 2025 and provides readers with an handy guide to what it describes as “positive behaviours”. These are the behaviours ASIC expects of the companies and individuals it regulates, which it believes will “[improve] financial outcomes for consumers and investors and [support] the economic recovery”.

“At all times, we expect our regulated population to act in a fair, professional and ethical manner, in the best interest of consumers and investors,” it says.

A regulator charged with upholding consumer protection would say that, wouldn’t it?

ASIC defines “positive behaviours”

Below is what you could reasonably call ASIC’s summary guide to being good:

  • Strong governance controls that support sound decision making and a culture of achieving fair and efficient outcomes
  • A commitment to design and distribute products that meet the needs of consumers
  • Robust disclosure and reporting practices that provide clear, accurate and timely information to consumers based on their needs
  • Healthy competition between product and service providers, based on differing business models and structures
  • Timely and accurate significant breach reporting to ASIC
  • Efficient handling of complaints and dispute resolution, and appropriate and timely consumer remediation where losses have resulted from poor conduct.

If this all sounds a bit familiar, then there’s a good reason. You may remember an inquiry that ran for most of 2018 and examined misconduct in the banking, superannuation and financial services industry.

Read the full article at Professional Planner.

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