Code Committee proposes changes

The Financial Advice Code Committee is proposing changes to the standards of competence, knowledge, and skill in the Financial Advice Code.


The Code is part of the Financial Markets Conduct Act regulatory regime for financial advice. It sets the conduct standards for everyone who gives financial advice.

Code Committee Chair Angus Dale-Jones said: “Financial advice provider businesses must take all reasonable steps to ensure that their financial advisers have the competence, knowledge, and skill for the advice they give.”

“The proposed amendments reinforce the importance of continuing professional development for financial advisers. That’s fundamental for the availability and quality of financial advice for all New Zealanders.”

There are many learning and development activities that financial advisers can choose to build their competence, knowledge, and skill. Those activities include, for example, getting additional qualifications, formal courses, informal and self-directed learning, formal mentoring or coaching, and gaining on-the-job experience.

“The bottom line is that the Code’s standards operate in an integrated manner to require financial advisers to do only what they are competent to do.”

The Committee’s consultation document also proposes amendments to formally recognise the recently approved version 3 of the New Zealand Certificate in Financial Services (Level 5) and to retain the Level 5 Certificate qualification outcomes for Code Standard 7 (minimum standard for investment planning competence).

Amendments to the Code must be approved by the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.

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