You're subscribed as [email address suppressed] View online  |  Preference Centre
Continuing conduct and culture review

Rob Everett, Chief Executive, FMA


In light of the issues highlighted by the Australian Royal Commission, we and our co-regulators are currently carrying out an extensive review of NZ-based banks and life insurers to test that similar issues don’t exist here. Where issues have come to light already, we want firms to show us how robustly they’ve dealt with them.


Importance of good conduct

The good practice set out in our Conduct Guide 2017 has been the starting point of our inquiries. It’s interesting to recall during the guide’s consultation phase we got push back from some parts of industry. We heard that we were trying to expand our remit into areas we did not license, such as retail banking, consumer credit and insurance. 


It was also said we were trying to “impose” new requirements, with no legal basis, for how financial services firms treat their customers.

Community impact, customers first

The situation in Australia, and our recent collaboration with RBNZ and the Commerce Commission, reminded me of the conduct guide discussions. As I said at the time, AFAs have a Code of Conduct and I saw no reason why the rest of the industry should not operate under similar standards. We have more tools to influence FMA-licensed firms, so this was a call to action for the rest of the industry.


The Australians talked about “community expectations” – we asked firms to focus on good customer outcomes, building confidence in our financial services. We acknowledged the Conduct Guide was just that - a guide, and not mandatory. However, we encouraged all providers of financial services and products to review their conduct against it.

Our current review reinforces what we already know. Some parts of the industry understood the Conduct Guide’s call to action, and have already spoken to us about the internal processes they have underway. Others stuck their heads in the sand, believing our guidance was not “relevant” to the areas of their business we don’t license. I hope those parts of the industry have now well and truly pulled their heads out.


Rob Everett

Chief Executive

KiwiSaver Tracker data updated

Our KiwiSaver Tracker has now been updated with data from the period 1 October to 31 December 2017.


You can see data from the previous periods at this link.



13 June

Consultation closes: Proposed exemption for same class offers of ASX NZX-quoted financial products More >

2 July – 31 August

Annual AML/CFT reports - reporting entities supervised by us must submit their annual AML/CFT report through our online system between 2 July and 31 August 2018. More >

Crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending providers annual regulatory return – licensees must submit their annual regulatory return between 2 July and 31 August 2018. More >


13 August  30 September

AFA Information return - early notification for AFAs to start preparing for their annual information return. Submissions open on Monday 13 August and are open until 30 September 2018.  More >

New guidance and publications

Auditor regulation and oversight plan 2018-2021

This three-year plan sets out our intentions and expectations for auditors.
More >

Compliance assurance programmes guide

We have published a guide for FMC Act licensees and applicants that covers best practice for compliance assurance programmes.
More >

Guide for peer-to-peer lending services on publishing default rate information

This guide will help peer-to-peer licensees understand and meet the minimum licensing standard for publishing default rate information.
More >

Review of frontline supervisors

Following supervisor re-licensing last year, we have released an update on our key findings and what we will focus on in future monitoring activities.

More >


Intending to become an AFA?


If you plan to become an AFA using the old National Certificate in Financial Services (Financial Advice) Level 5, please submit your application no later than 1 November 2018. See our website for more details.



What’s coming up?

Get a heads up on what we’re releasing soon



Consultation: Determining whether you are acquiring a business


We intend to consult on guidance on how to determine whether a business has been acquired (or is to be acquired).  Under the FMC Regulations, prescribed financial information about business acquisitions must be included in the PDS for an offer of debt or equity.  It is sometimes not clear what is a business acquisition for these purposes. 


NZX general obligations review

Our annual review of how well NZX is meeting its statutory obligations will be published by the end of June.

MIS manager valuation and pricing practices

Following our review of the valuation and pricing practices of Managed Investment Scheme (MIS) interests, we will shortly release an information sheet on our findings and recommendations.


MIS market index exemption/guidance

We expect to grant an exemption for managed investment schemes managers that will take effect in July. They will no longer have to publish a market index in their quarterly fund updates if there is no appropriate broad-based securities index.  The exemption has conditions attached - one of which is that managers use a peer group index instead, if this is useful for investors. We will publish guidance and the exemption notice at the same time.


QFE insurance providers’ replacement business practices

In July we will release a thematic review focused on QFE insurance providers’ replacement business practices. It will look at how these providers’ policies and procedures are ensuring consumer protection. This work is part of a suite of reviews of conflicted conduct in the financial services sector. We will follow up later this year with a report on the structure of bank incentives.


Improving the quality of financial reporting

This monitoring report will summarise the findings from our review of improvements in the presentation of financial statements, and include suggestions for further improvement. It will be published by the end of June.


We’re hiring

Join a vibrant and dynamic team that embraces work-life balance, a commitment to employee well-being, and opportunities for learning and development.  Check our website to find out more.


FMA news

30 May - Financial Services Conduct and Culture Review


24 May - Letter sent to life insurers by the FMA and Reserve Bank of New Zealand


24 May - Market cleanliness summer scholarship study published


18 May - FMA campaign to connect young women with KiwiSaver


17 May - CBL Update


Industry insights

A helping hand for the invisible hand: the FCA’s approach to competition and innovation - Financial Conduct Authority



Use of behavioural insights may help educate investors, say IOSCO/OECD - International Organisation of Securities Commissions



Reinforcing culture in a climate of low trust - Australian Securities and Investment Commission


Email us at

FMA - FINANCIAL MARKETS AUTHORITY     Financial Markets Authority
Level 5, Ernst & Young Building
2 Takutai Square
Auckland 1143
Copyright © 2018 Financial Markets Authority. All rights reserved.