When we provide clients with compliance advice, one of the first questions we ask is “do you have retail or wholesale investors?” The distinction is vital as the AFS Licensee’s legal obligations and compliance requirements are dependent on which investor type they target, and what authorisations they have on their AFSL.
The Assistant Treasurer introduced the Treasury Laws Amendment (Design and Distribution Obligations and Product Intervention Powers) Bill 2018 (Cth) (Bill) in September 2018. If passed by Parliament, the Bill will make significant changes to the way retail financial products are designed and distributed to improve consumer protection. It also enhances ASIC’s powers to intervene in situations where consumers are put at risk.
Generating financial value is the key for any successful business, but generating sustainable value is still largely aspirational despite global movements to include more than the balance sheet when valuing a business or investments.
Passing laws cannot instill good corporate culture and governance in an organisation, according to Commissioner Hayne. Culture and governance are “affected by rules, systems and practices, but in the end they depend upon people applying the right standards and doing their jobs properly.