Speaking at the ASIC Annual Forum last week, SPAA chief executive Andrea Slattery said it is critical that the financial services industry does not consider the corporate regulator to be the answer to all its ills.
“You’ve got to make decisions and you’ve got to be accountable for them,” Ms Slattery said.
“Industries and professions work because the profession actually raises the standard from what the regulator says is the absolute minimum. We need the market to commit to a high level of professionalism.”
Ms Slattery said poor financial literacy is the responsibility of the nation, and a bottom-up approach should be taken to improving the understanding of financial services.
“We cannot be relying on the regulator to bring something in, to make us behave and to make us commit,” she said.
Ms Slattery added that good quality advice, as opposed to sales services, are beneficial to all investors.
“In our world, all the research is showing that if you provide good quality advice, not sales services, you will get paid for it,” she said. “I don’t think that’s different from any other industry.”