financial advice, Legislation

Accountants call for end to adviser exam

Financial adviser exam Quality of Advice Review Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand CPA Australia

Two industry bodies have urged Treasury to consider removing the financial adviser exam administered by ASIC.

CPA Australia and the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) have called on the government to remove the financial adviser exam from the requirements to be met by new entrants to the profession.

The two industry bodies made their objections clear to the exam requirement in a joint submission to Treasury on the Corporations (Relevant Providers – Education and Training Standards) Amendment (2024 Measures No 1) Determination 2024, which will amend the existing adviser exam.

“All financial advisers providing personal financial advice to retail clients who are currently on the relevant Australian Securities Investments Commission register(s) have completed the exam,” the submission stated.

“Many of these advisers have already completed additional education – or will have satisfied other permitted transitional requirements such as the recently enacted 10-year experienced pathway.

“It is CAANZ and CPA Australia’s view that as all new entrants to the financial advice sector must be educated to at least Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) level 7, we believe the exam requirement is no longer required.

“We encourage the government to introduce amending legislation to this effect as soon as possible.”

While the joint submission urged Treasury to consider removing the exam on the basis the education requirement already evaluates the abilities of new entrants, the accounting bodies backed the objectives of the draft amendment in principle if the exam were to continue.

“Whilst the financial adviser exam remains in place, we support the amendments proposed by the government in the exposure draft Corporations (Relevant Providers—Education and Training Standards) Amendment (2024 Measures No. 1) Determination 2024,” it stated.

“In particular we believe the quality of the exam will not be diminished if it is all multiple choice.

“We also think that permitting a wider range of people to sit the exam is also welcome as it may encourage those who have left the industry but have not as yet satisfied all relevant provider requirements, or existing advisers, to sit the exam.”

The consultation period for the draft amendment closed on 10 January.

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