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RC recommendations to boost trust in advice

The SMSF Association has lauded the reforms stemming from the banking royal commission’s final report, claiming they will result in a more professional and trusted financial advice sector.

“Sound advice is crucial to the financial well-being of Australians, and from the perspective of the SMSF sector, it’s crucial trustees get quality advice that they can confidently use to make financial decisions about their retirement income strategies,” SMSF Association chief executive John Maroney said.

Maroney noted commissioner Kenneth Hayne has identified crucial areas for reform that will result in the advice industry becoming a true profession, while consumers will receive better-quality financial advice.

He pointed to specific recommendations he believes will lead to placing the advice industry on a better footing.

These recommendations include preventing a repeat of the fees-for-no-service practice, eliminating conflicts of interest through the removal of grandfathered commissions and a reduction in life/risk insurance commissions gradually to zero, and ensuring a coherent system of professional discipline.

“The 12-month royal commission process and the intense media scrutiny it received, as well as the public reaction to the final report, makes it abundantly clear that Australians want to be able to unreservedly trust the financial advice they receive,” Maroney said.

The association will closely watch the implementation of the commission’s recommendations to ensure changes achieve their policy intent without imposing excessive costs or disruption on advisers who deliver conflict-free advice, he said.

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