Fund Product, Company and Regulatory Updates as at 28 May 2019

Company Updates

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TAL wins big with two new industry super fund group insurance mandates
Rest industry superannuation fund has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with TAL to provide life insurance for members from late 2019. TAL will replace AIA Australia, ending a 15-year relationship. LGIAsuper has also chosen TAL as their group insurer, ending a seven-year arrangement with OnePath. The new arrangements will begin in July.

Regulatory Updates

Hostplus fined for claiming ‘independent’ financial advice
ASIC has alleged that Hostplus mislead consumers regarding its offering of ‘independent’ financial advice in a recorded phone message attached to the main contact number. The phone message referred to a free consultation available to members with a licensed financial planner from Industry Funds Super (IFS), with the advice being referred to as ‘independent’.

The message was picked up on after a complaint was made. ASIC had concerns that Hostplus and IFS were not independent of each other based on the fact that Hostplus employees were appointed as authorised representatives to provide financial advice under IFS’s Australian Financial Services (AFS) licence.

Hostplus paid service fees to IFS for adviser services, and Hostplus was a shareholder of IFS’s parent company for a relevant time period. Hostplus has corrected its phone message and paid the $12,600 infringement notice penalty.

Goldsky companies liquidated, declarations made
A collection of companies, the Goldsky entities, were previously placed into liquidation and the assets frozen after breaches of the Corporations Act, specifically running a financial services business without a licence. Kenneth Grace is the sole director and shareholder of the three companies, which are:

  • Goldsky Global Access Fund Pty Ltd

  • Goldsky Asset Management Australia Pty Ltd

  • Goldsky Investments Pty Ltd

Grace was suspected of running a ponzi scheme, and has been fined in the United States too, where he was also running financial services businesses. Investor shortfall is likely to be over $12 million.