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Equity Trustees hit with fine by APRA

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has fined Equity Trustees Superannuation $782,500 for failing to meet its legal obligations to report data to APRA.

EQT breached the requirements of the Financial Sector (Collection of Data) Act 2001 (FSCODA) by failing to report data by the required deadlines for two funds under its trusteeship, AMG Super and Super Simplifier.

APRA said EQT lodged nine reporting forms 50 days late for AMG Super and six reporting forms 38 days late for Super Simplifier for the quarter ended 30 September 2023.

APRA deputy chair Margaret Cole said by issuing the fine, APRA wanted to send a clear message to industry of the importance of submitting data on time.

"We expect all entities to be compliant with our reporting standards to ensure APRA always has the most up-to date information to effectively monitor the safety and stability of Australia's banking, insurance and superannuation systems," Cole said.

"Notwithstanding the highly outsourced nature of the superannuation industry, accountability for meeting regulatory obligations sits with trustees.

"APRA expects trustees to maintain appropriate oversight of service providers, which includes ensuring the provider is adequately resourced to meet requirements."

EQT has until 3 July 2024 to pay the fine, APRA said.

EQT said it accepted the required reporting standards were not met and recognised the importance of accurate and timely data required by the regulator.

"Importantly, no members were impacted by the late reporting of the data," EQT said in a statement.

"Steps were taken immediately with the fund administrator once it became clear that they were not able to meet the required deadline, with [Equity Trustees] promptly informing the regulator and maintaining communication throughout on progress to address the situation."

EQT said it took all prudent and reasonable steps to abide by the conditions of the relevant Act, but in these instances, it sought to prioritise accurate reporting of data, rather than meeting the required time frame.

EQT said it does not expect to incur any financial liability in respect of the infringement.

Read more: APRAEQTEquity Trustees SuperannuationMargaret ColeAustralian Prudential Regulation Authority