Latest research suggests more than half of the financial advisers in Australia are not affiliated with any industry association, despite the impending professional standards reform.
Rainmaker analysis shows just 12,400 of Australia's financial advisers have declared an affiliation to at least one association.
As at November 1, a total of 24,889 financial advisers were registered with ASIC, suggesting a further 12,489 advisers may not be a current member of any professional body.
According to the Financial Adviser Register, 8105 advisers identify as members of the Financial Planning Association of Australia - almost three and a half times the number identifying with the Association of Financial Advisers.
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As the FPA and AFA are the dominant industry bodies, these figures may swell in the coming year as both have flagged interest in becoming code monitoring bodies in line with the new requirement for advisers to comply with a code of ethics by January 2020.
Rounding out the top four, 1758 advisers identify as members of CPA Australia while 1230 declare an affiliation with the SMSF Association.
Meanwhile, the Institute of Public Accountants, Mortgage and Finance Advisers Association, he Finance Brokers Association of Australia and Association of Independently Owned Financial Planners each have less than 500 advisers claiming membership.
Excluding the IPA, these smaller bodies are in reality niche associations heavily reliant on a primary AFSL contributing a large portion of their adviser numbers, Rainmaker said.
For instance, a majority of the AIOFP's membership is licensed by Interprac Financial Planning and the majority of the FBAA's is aligned with AMP Financial Planning, as are the MFAA's.
There are more advisers from a greater range of licensees affiliated with the FPA, AFA, CPA Australia, SMSFA and IPA.
Digging deeper into the key associations, the greatest number of advisers claiming affiliation with the FPA are licensed by AMP Financial Planning while Synchron appears to contribute the most advisers to the AFA.
Under the new professional standards legislation, financial advisers must comply with a code of ethics and be a member of a compliance scheme or code monitoring body from 1 January 2020.
It is expected that most industry associations will apply to monitor and enforce compliance with the code/s.