The year ahead 2014 - Part One


By Krystine Lumanta

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It’s been a massive year for the Australian financial services industry.

As the investment and advice sectors worked tirelessly to address government reforms, businesses also pushed ahead with new growth strategies and fresh initiatives.

Since the new government was installed in September, it has flagged 16 issues it would address in relation to Labor’s Future of Financial Advice (FOFA) reforms.

In addition, it announced the appointment of David Murray to head the Financial System Inquiry, while also committing to a moratorium on any significant regulatory or legislative change to financial services or superannuation.

Fixing the FOFA legislation is one of the most anticipated outcomes from the new government.

As the year finally winds down, financialobserver asked key figures in the investment and advice sectors to share their key priorities for their businesses in 2014 and their expectations for industry and the government in the new year.

Both sectors strongly expressed the need to bed down reforms promptly and for less red tape in order to move beyond reform and allow the industry to concentrate on servicing clients.

Fund managers hold expectations for further business changes off the government’s amendments to and clarification of the FOFA reforms, while others are optimistic problematic elements of the reforms will be abolished.

The investment sector also flagged education and financial literacy as areas for improvement.

On the advice side, while the industry will work to improve processing in line with FOFA, continuing professional development and support for financial advisers was highlighted as a key area of focus for 2014.

Advice practices are also focusing greater attention on business growth and sustainability to cope with the future.

At the same time, the advice industry hopes it can better articulate and progress with articulating the value of advice to Australians.

For responses from the investment industry, click here.

For responses from the advice industry, click here.

Part two of this feature will be published in January 2014.

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