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ASIC

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has licensed the first crowd-sourced funding (CSF) intermediaries under the new CSF regime.

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The Australian Financial Services (AFS) Licence of a financial adviser in Brisbane was cancelled yesterday but the announcement was made first thing this morning Sydney time . Today, at least one LinkedIn profile says that the company holds an AFS licence proving that social media and due diligence are not good bedfellows. The case also shows that penalties for failure to comply with orders by regulators to undertake more effective management can have serious repercussions.

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Financial adviser Drew Grosskreutz of Queensland, Australia, has been banned from providing financial services for three years, says ASIC

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With effect from 4th April, 2018, new rules will apply to Australian financial services (AFS) licensees that hold "derivative retail client money."

Inevitably, it's not that simple. Then again, our detailed analysis shows that compliance should not be expensive or difficult,

ASIC has disqualified Kathleen Whittle of New South Wales from being an approved self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) auditor.

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Yes, yes, we know. Commonwealth Bank's got its problems over a failure to properly design and implement an automatic system and for not acting on the reports it did produce. But that's not the only thing bad that's happening down at the bank that has more short-forms of its name than we can keep up with. CBA, Commonwealth, CB, CommBank... so much for the usual rule of construction that if it's called something different, it is something different.

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Australia's superannuation scheme is popularly known as "super" and it has nothing to do with Reggie Perrin although, given the frequent problems with it, it might be the successor to Sunshine Des serts. Now an auditor of self-managed schemes has been banned after it was determined that he had "breached fundamental independence and audit requirements."

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Binary options are a simple concept: they pay a fixed return, or nothing. It's a bit like a KickStarter campaign: if you hit the target, you get your money, if you miss it, you don't. But with binary options, the risks are different: fail and you lose your investment. So, there's another way of looking at it: it's a bet and if you lose, you lose your stake, so it's not like an ordinary option where you might still get back some of your original investment. For sophisticated investors and financial adrenalin junkies, they are fine. For everyone else, they are very high risk. Aussie regulator ASIC says that risk is rarely properly explained, and often it is not explained at all.

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ASIC has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court of Australia to wind up a land banking scheme known as the VKK Investments Unit Trust (VKK scheme), as well as the trustee and operator of the scheme, Gem Management Group Pty Ltd (Gem).

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The Federal Court of Australia has ordered the winding up of 18 companies associated with the Macro Group, all of which have Desiree Veronica Macpherson as a director.

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The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and Queensland Police Service (QPS) have worked together to identify those with criminal histories and continued connections with suspected criminal activity who also hold company directorships, including directorships of private companies: then ASIC has removed them from their boards. The action is designed to limit the use of corporations in the commission of crimes, including money laundering.

"Diploma, established in 1976, is a publicly listed commercial construction and property development company, undertaking a diverse portfolio of commercial, retail and high density residential projects," according to its website but Australia's corporate regulator, ASIC, has appointed liquidators to the group. Its shares on ASX have been suspended since the end of August 2016

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Andrew Peter Panayiotides, an employee, no longer with the company, of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management in Australia has been banned from providing financial advice for "failing to act in the best interests of clients." The regulator, ASIC, has specifically drawn attention to the incentives structure. Are there also hidden messages about Know Your Customer?

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For the goldfish amongst us and those who are too young to know and, especially, those who simply don't think history has anything to tell us, here is something to note: crises hit us every few years. The superficial causes are viewed as significant but in truth, most crises result from one thing: overstated balance sheets and the fact that those who have naively accepted them suddenly discover that not one, not two but many companies are not worth the paper they are written on. Literally.

Pay attention

We are back in the times of asset value restatement with several examples in the past month alone.

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In a majorly embarrassing incident, has imposed additional licence conditions on the Australian financial services licence of NAB's superannuation trustee, NULIS Nominees (Australia) Limited (NULIS), following breakdowns in internal procedures.

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