The president of NIBA David Wyner has opened the association’s convention in Adelaide by warning against ‘unnecessary and ineffective’ regulation that could cause ‘collateral damage’ for brokers and their businesses.
In his opening address, Wyner said that NIBA had been forced to be ‘extremely active’ on behalf of brokers on a wide range of ‘behind the scenes’ issues this year, particularly in relation to the Financial System Inquiry led by David Murray.
Wyner said while much of the media coverage surrounding the FSI focused on banking, super and financial advice, an ‘important aspect’ related to the regulation of financial services, which affected ‘every broker in the room’.
Wyner said the insurance industry and brokers risked being swept up in catch-all regulation following problems in the financial advice industry.
“We are not the problem,” Wyner said. “But with our one size fits all regulatory regime, we are often caught by the reforms, and the new regulations that are implemented. We can and we will suffer collateral damage if we don’t act,” he said.
Wyner said NIBA has been fighting an ongoing battle for more than two years arguing risk insurance advice is different from financial planning and investment advice.
“Different parts of the financial services system do different things, providing advice on different types of products which have different roles and objectives for advisers’ clients,” he said.
“We should not have a regulatory regime that imposes obligations right across all sectors, regardless of the nature of the products involved.
“That approach as I am sure you would all agree is just completely wrong.”
Wyner said regulations governing the insurance industry and brokers had worked very well over the last 10 years, saying not one insurer had failed since HIH, and the industry was resilient through the pressure and stresses of the GFC as well as the wave of claims through 2011 and 2012 disasters.
“NIBA will do the best it can to protect you from the burden of unnecessary and ineffective regulation,” Wyner said.