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Better disclosures, guidance, investor focus and capability building

Last month’s message from Liam Mason touched on the importance of improving our understanding of the risk profile of regulated sectors by deepening our supervisory contact with them. Our activities continue to reflect our view of the risks within those sectors.

Focus on sale practices, improved disclosures
Our review of potential policy churn in the insurance industry reflects our focus on sales practices as shown in earlier work on KiwiSaver.  We are also reviewing fee structures and disclosures in the managed funds sector to improve disclosures for those making investment decisions. This is a hot topic globally as more people are investing through intermediaries.

Guidance on trading controls
Staying on managed funds, we published an information sheet for fund managers on the controls and processes around trading. As the sector moves into a licensed environment and against the backdrop of our investigation into Milford Asset Management’s trading, we needed to provide deeper guidance on the trading controls that boards and management teams within fund managers need to consider.

Mitigating conduct risks
We have also spoken, generally, with a number of the bigger providers of financial services about conduct risk. Some have clearly learnt lessons from jurisdictions where the industry has failed in how they treat customers. We want to ensure the same mistakes are not made here.

We have talked about how executive teams and boards comfort themselves that good intentions ‘at the top’ translate to good management ‘in the middle’, and into good outcomes for customers. The focus on the interests of, and risks to, customers has to be relentless.

Building investment capability
Lastly, following the launch of our investor capability strategy at the Commission for Financial Capability (CFFC) Summit, we have been working with the CFFC and the NZX on their investment risk series. We have completed a survey of investment attitudes and capability amongst over 50s with the CFFC, and are planning our events for Money Week (31 August – 6 September). The biggest piece of that, for us, will be in Christchurch where we seek to engage with people about their KiwiSaver knowledge and choices.

Rob Everett
Chief Executive, FMA

Life after work - ready or not

New research by the Commission for Financial Capability and the FMA shows that almost half of our over-50s have yet to figure out how they will reach their retirement goals.




Custodians – your first custodial assurance reports are due as early as 28 August 
Under the Financial Advisers (Custodians of FMCA Financial Products) Regulations 2014, custodians are required to obtain an assurance report from a qualified auditor. Custodians must receive their auditor’s report within four months of their accounting period’s close. On receiving the report, custodians must send it to us within 20 days, to this address, For those with an accounting period on or before 31 March 2015, your report is due 28 August 2015. Read more to see if this applies to you.

31 August – deadline for Annual AML/CFT reports
Reporting entities supervised by the FMA have nine working days left to submit their annual AML/CFT report through our online system. Please check our website for more information.

30 September - AFA information return
AFAs can start submitting their information return. They should complete their returns through our online system, by 30 September. Please check our website for more information.


Auditors’ procedures reports
The licensees listed below are required to provide us with an annual auditor’s report on their financial resources. The reports are usually due within four months of the respective licence holder’s balance date. The requirements are found in the following standard condition numbers:

Last month we were asked to clarify the procedures expected of auditors to satisfy these conditions. As such, we are reviewing a sample of the initial reports to determine if guidance or changes to the conditions are necessary. For further information please contact

What's new!

Market misconduct risks – a guide for managed investment scheme (MIS) managers

See our recently published information sheet to help MIS managers understand how to manage market misconduct risks in trading activity.


What's coming up

Updated AFA authorisation guide and refreshed website information  - this week

Refreshed DIMS website information - this month

Consultation paper: proposed amendment to the Auditor Regulations Act – later this month

Investigations and enforcement report – later this month

KiwiSaver statutory report – September

Sales and advice monitoring report – September

FMA’s annual report - September


How to renew your authorisation: A quick guide for AFAs - September

AFA renewals

We’re currently preparing for the first AFA renewals later this year, and will be publishing a guide for AFAs on our website in September. 

We are making the renewal application process as simple as possible and will be requesting less information than for initial authorisation. Much of the information we’ll require will be in the form of declarations that confirm an AFA’s continued good character, compliance with the Code, the standard conditions, the legislation and competence.


If you’re an AFA we encourage you to make a note of your expiry date now! You can apply to renew from up to six weeks before (but no later than) your expiry date. You will be able to continue to provide advice to your clients while we process your application for renewal, even if your expiry date passes during this time.



For this year’s Money Week, we’re encouraging New Zealanders who have their KiwiSaver on ‘set and forget’ to take a quick KiwiSaver health check. The health check prompts KiwiSavers to ask themselves four simple questions, designed to raise awareness of the important aspects of KiwiSaver and drive use of tools found on Sorted.

We’ll be promoting this through a fun event at Riccarton Mall in Christchurch, and traditional and social media. A number of financial services providers and organisations such as New Zealand Shareholders Association are running events during Money Week. Please see the Money Week website for details.


KiwiSaver – Thinking about transferring money from an overseas superannuation fund back to New Zealand?

It’s important to get independent, professional financial advice. Check our information on overseas transfers, including how to choose an adviser or pension transfer company, and wise up on the pros and cons before making a move - read more.



Green Gardens Trust – We have issued a stop order against Green Gardens Finance Trust Limited and have warned the public to be wary of depositing money or dealing with this company. If you have deposited funds with this company please contact us.


FMA news

A summary of recent FMA media releases and/or speeches.

14 August - FMA secures interim asset preservation orders over PTT Limited and Steven Robertson


12 August - Life after work - ready or not


3 August - Belinda Moffat decides to leave FMA after three years leading enforcement


31 July - FMA files civil proceedings against portfolio manager for alleged market manipulation


28 July - FMA’s Capital + Merchant Finance civil proceedings discontinued


27 July - FMA issues first Stop Order against Green Gardens Finance Trust Ltd

Industry news




18 August - Another financial adviser negligence claim falls over


14 August - FMA warns on forex traders


14 August - NZ Super Fund invests $US75m in Silicon Valley glass technology start-up


14 August - The real deal with NZ’s equity crowdfunding love affair


13 August - Solid Energy announces voluntary administration ahead of sale


10 August - Large Auckland mortgage broker granted p2p licence





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