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Issue 682, 8 August 2018 
In this issue: 


Royal Commission: superannuation hearings 

The Royal Commission into misconduct in the banking, superannuation and financial services industry is currently holding its fifth round of hearings, in relation to superannuation. 

The ASFA team is closely monitoring the proceedings of the Royal Commission and is preparing a brief factual account of each day’s hearings that have a superannuation focus. These reports can be accessed on the ASFA website, via this link. 



ASIC: additional funding to combat misconduct in financial services 

The Government has announced a significant expansion of ASIC’s resources and powers to combat misconduct in the financial services industry, including increased supervision of the superannuation sector. 

The package announced by the Government is intended to bolster ASIC’s enforcement capabilities and enable it to undertake new regulatory activities and investigations, so as to better deliver on its mandate of combatting misconduct in corporations and in the financial services industry. 

The Minister for Revenue and Financial Services, the Hon Kelly O’Dwyer MP, said the additional funding, totalling $70.1 million: 

The package of measures includes: 

The remaining funds will be directed towards improving consumer access to the Financial Advisers Register; enhancing ASIC’s enforcement work on the unfair contract term protections for small businesses; and ensuring compliance by licensees and financial advisers with the Future of Financial Advice laws. 



AFCA: membership application process now open 

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) has launched an online membership application process for superannuation fund trustees. 

AFCA is the new external dispute resolution body for the financial services industry, and will begin hearing new complaints from 1 November 2018 (the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal will continue for a period to deal with existing superannuation complaints). All ‘financial firms’, including superannuation trustees, are required to become members of AFCA by 21 September 2018. 

AFCA has requested ASFA to provide you with the following information: 


How to apply for AFCA membership 

  1. From Tuesday 7 August 2018, superannuation entities can lodge an online application for membership of AFCA via this link. 
  2. There is $350 membership fee which is payable by VISA, Mastercard or AMEX (AMEX incurs a 1.75 per cent surcharge). This fee will be deducted from their superannuation levy invoice when they are sent out in October 2018. 
  3. Upon acceptance of the membership application, superannuation entities will receive a confirmation email advising them of their member number and where to access their membership certificate. 

For more information about the application process please email: or call 1300 56 55 62. 


AFCA Membership webcast 

We will shortly be circulating an invitation to participate in an AFCA Membership webcast on the afternoon of Tuesday 28 August. Details on the content and how to register will be included in the invitation. 

For more information about AFCA’s proposed interim funding arrangements for superannuation trustees, refer ASFA Action issue 678. 



Superannuation Consumers’ Centre 

The Superannuation Consumers’ Centre (SCC) has announced that it has received $2.5 million in funding from regulatory action that will allow it to become fully operational for the first time. 

The SCC was formed in 2013 as a not-for-profit to advance and protect the interests of low and middle income consumers of the superannuation system. The SCC seeks to: 

The funding provided to the SCC is sourced from recent regulatory action undertaken by ASIC. In particular, ASIC recently agreed to enforceable undertakings with ANZ and CBA which involved the organisations each paying $1.25M toward funding the SCC. 



APRA: replacement of D2A data reporting system 

APRA has recently written to its regulated entities regarding its plans to replace the D2A (Direct to APRA) data reporting system with a new data collection solution. APRA has also published its response to submissions made by industry in relation to the proposed replacement of D2A. 

APRA has indicated that it will shortly issue a request for tender seeking a software provider to deliver the new data collection tool. 

Refer ASFA Action issue 662 for background on the replacement of D2A. 



Productivity Commission: competition in the financial system 

The Productivity Commission has released the report from its inquiry into competition in the Australian financial system 

The report focuses primarily on the authorised deposit-taking (ADI) and non-ADI lending sector and does not include any findings or recommendations specifically in relation to superannuation or retirement incomes. It does, however, make a number of findings in relation to the regulatory settings for the financial system. 

Some of the Commission’s key observations and findings include: 

Some noteworthy recommendations include: 

The SOE for each financial regulator member of the CFR should state that the ACCC is to be given the opportunity to advise the CFR on regulator actions that may have material effects on competition, before they are implemented. 




ASFA’s Regulatory Watchlist (ARW) tracks developments in Legislation, inquiries, consultations

and other regulatory announcements relevant to superannuation.

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