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Financial Planning
AMP adviser numbers shrivel

The number of financial advisers licensed by AMP dropped dramatically in 2020, with the institution no longer the largest AFSL in the country by number of advisers.

The largest AFSL is now the SMSF Adviser Network which had 839 advisers as at 31 December 2020.

AMP Financial Planning lost the most advisers of any AFSL in 2020, with 345 departing between January and December.

Between December 17 and December 31 alone, AMP lost 22 advisers. It was this drop that saw AMP finish the year by losing its top spot.

For the first time in years, AMP is not the largest dealer group in the country.

AMP changed the terms of its agreements with advisers in 2019 and began the process of terminating several - mostly smaller - practices.

"We knew there were about 250-300 firms they gave notice to that they were terminating, so it's not a surprise," The Advisers Association chief executive Neil Macdonald told Financial Standard last month.

He explained that the practices terminated by AMP were typically single-planner businesses with turnover of less than $300,000.

"I don't think the majority of them were planning to leave the industry," Macdonald said.

However, he said only a small portion of those AMP advisers could go and join other licensees - most were left with few options but to leave the industry entirely.

Approximately 300 of the advisers that left AMP ceased operating as financial advisers all together according to the ASIC FAR data.

"AMP made the decision that they weren't economically viable," Macdonald said.

AMP Financial Planning advisers filed a class action against the institution in July 2020 over its revaluing of Buyer of Last Resort agreements.

Read more: AMP Financial PlanningNeil MacdonaldAdvisers AssociationBuyer of Last ResortSMSF Adviser Network
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