Trust in advisers still at post-GFC lows


By Sarah Kendell

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Australian consumers’ trust in financial planners has shown no improvement since the period immediately following the global financial crisis, according to new Roy Morgan research.

The firm’s Superannuation and Wealth Management in Australia research, conducted in October, surveyed almost 650 consumers and found that trust in financial planners when it came to ethics and honesty had declined 2 per cent in the past 12 months to 25 per cent, the same level as in the 2009 survey.

However, at the same time as trust levels declined, satisfaction levels increased among clients who had implemented their current superannuation investments through an adviser, with super fund satisfaction rising to 71 per cent among those who had come into their current fund through an independent adviser - a 5 per cent increase on last year’s results.

Additionally, super satisfaction among those who had entered their fund through an aligned planner also increased 5 per cent to 68 per cent.

Roy Morgan industry communications director Norman Morris said the results revealed those who did their retirement planning through an independent adviser were extremely satisfied with their experience.

“However, it seems confusion and mistrust cause many people to avoid seeking financial advice at all,” he said.

Further research revealed that those who had found their super fund through their employer were least satisfied with its performance, with just 56 per cent saying they were happy with their current fund.

Morris said this represented an opportunity for advisers, as the vast majority of consumers currently accessed super through their employer.

“This represents a major opportunity for financial advisers to find new ways to engage with the Australian public, especially younger audiences,” he said.

“If advisers can find ways to overcome issues of trust and independence there is a huge potential market for their advice.”

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