The much-anticipated standards body for financial advice has been established, setting in motion the implementation of the professional standards legislation.
Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Kelly O'Dwyer named the directors appointed to the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA), responsible for governing the conduct of those in the financial advice sector through mandatory educational and training requirements, the development and setting of an industry exam, and the creation of a Code of Ethics that all advisers will be required to obey.
Featuring a number of well-known financial services personalities, FASEA comprises three financial services professionals, three consumer advocacy experts, an ethicist and an academic. Former NAB director Catherine Walter has been appointed as inaugural chair.
Responsible for maintaining board cohesion and uniting board directors of differing backgrounds to professionalise the advice sector, Walter also currently serves as a director of the Reserve Bank of Australia's Payments Systems Board and for the Australian Foundation Investment Company. Having been appointed to more than 15 boards in the past 25 years, Walter is also a former managing partner of law firm Clayton Utz.
Other FASEA board members include:
- Deborah Kent
- Carolyn Bond
- Mark Brimble
- Matthew Rowe
- Catriona Lowe
- Simon Longstaff
- Steve Somogyi
- Michael O'Neill
Minister O'Dwyer said the FASEA board's primary focuses will be ensuring the financial viability of the authority and setting strategic objectives for it, and approving the education standards for advisers, the exam and the model code of ethics.
The new body will commence 1 July 2017, with a key objective to appoint a chief executive to be accountable for the Authority's strategic decisions.