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.
ASIC has been called at various stages “a toothless tiger” and “a pawn of the financial services industry”. And the Interim Report of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry (Interim Report) doesn’t seem to disagree. Which brings up the question – does this mean that the future for ASIC, and the similarly unproductive APRA, is bright? Or does it mean that Commissioner Hayne is likely to recommend that there be at least some sort of reform of the regulators in the final report?
On 15 February 2018, a new risk International Risk Management Standard ISO 31000:2018 was released. ISO 31000:2018 is shorter, clearer and more concise than its predecessor, but is still considered best practice for implementing risk management systems. A new Australia/New Zealand Standard (which adopts ISO 31000:2018 in full) was adopted by Standards Australia on 30 October 2018.
Almost a year after the Corporations Amendment (Crowd-sourced Funding) Act 2017 (Cth) came into force, public unlisted companies are taking advantage of the reduced regulatory requirements applied to crowd-sourced funding. We take a look at how companies become eligible to use the new regime.
‘Blowing the whistle’ – after a lengthy consultation phase, the draft Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Bill 2017 (Cth) (Bill) is currently before Parliament having gone through two readings. The aim of the Bill is to create a comprehensive and concise whistleblower protection regime within the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Corporations Act) that extends to the private sector and, in particular, to the corporate, financial and credit industries. Is your corporation, and more importantly are your staff, ready for the changes?