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ASIC

It's not the best way to start the week, much less the month. The first notice from Australian regulator The Australian Securities and Investment Commission tells that Macquarie Securities (Australia) Limited has been issued a penalty notice : ASIC "believes" the company "contravened" market integrity rules. The failure was of design, implementation and maintenance of compliance systems, not an intention to not comply, ASIC says. Plus ça change in so much of the financial sector, then.

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ASIC says that fixed coupon structured products are "complex, capital-at-risk products tied to the performance of reference shares," a definition that proves its point. Citigroup's advisers gave general advice, the company said. ASIC said retail customers "may have [been] led .. to believe that Citigroup was providing personal advice."

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How does your life insurance company compare to others when it comes to handling claims? Now, if you are in Australia, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) have produced data comparing insurance companies' performance and launched a tool to help policyholders make comparisons.

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Australian financial services giant AMP and its solicitors Clayton Utz have "surrendered" in their objections to producing notes of meetings which they claimed were subject to legal professional privilege. ASIC's position is simple: it has wide ranging powers to compel the release of documents and it will accept only a narrow and strict definition of legal professional privilege.

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Australia's Self-Managed Superannuation Fund schemes are great on paper. But in the real world, they are a constant source of problems.

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Now here's a surprise: Australian regulator ASIC has charged (actually charged, as in criminal charges) three people with laundering the proceeds of an attempt to manipulate an insolvency. Other countries have long included insolvency offences as predicate offences for money laundering purposes: this is the first case we can think of where action has been taken.

A new report by ASIC into its supervision of registered liquidators between January 2017 to June 2018 reveals significant review of the regulation of the sector - and some pretty serious negative news about it.

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The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) conducted inspections at Australia's six largest audit firms and found that they performed a little better than the industry average but even so, a fifth of them lacked material information.

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The Australian Securities and Investment Commission has applied to the Federal Court to wind up Traditional Therapy Clinics Limited (a Chinese Traditional Medicine company) after it was delisted by the Australian Stock Exchange and has asked the court that two members of Ernst and Young be appointed as liquidators.

So, now you know what all the letters mean, let's get on with the story which is, in part, about Red Stox and the continuing risks some of them pose for shareholders, regulators and sponsors to say nothing of those usually small businesses which put their faith in them ....

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Following an ASIC investigation, the Federal Court of Australia has wound up Australian financial services Licensee CFS Private Wealth Pty Ltd and Combined Financial Solutions Pty Ltd, a corporate authorised representative of CFS Private Wealth, and restrained its director, Graeme Walter Miller, from providing financial services for 25 years. Miller is also disqualified from managing corporations for three years.

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Another day, another judgment against an Australian banking group for misconduct. The Australian Securities and Investment Commission's civil action against two WestPac group companies ended with findings of fault - but, again, ASIC has not succeeded on grounds upon which it thought it was safe. Spoiler alert: the case was commenced before the start of the Royal Commission on Misconduct in Banking, etc.

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Mrs Shilpa Karandikar and Mr Shrikrishna Karandikar have pleaded guilty in a magistrates' court in Australia after breaching a banning order made following an ASIC investigation.

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A former financial planner from Melbourne, Australia, has been prosecuted by the regulator the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)

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It's one of those times where there is double take. Are you reading it right? A Court has said it will not approve an agreed settlement between a financial institution and a regulator? Oh, OK, it must be that the Court thought that the penalty was too light and he's sent the parties away to decide how much more should be paid, or perhaps penalties beyond money should be added?

No, that's not it. It's far more fascinating than that.

(previous story)

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