David Chaplin has this report detailing the changes in AFA numbers and alignment over the last five years. Called 'last days...' because of the recommendation to end the AFA designation under the FAA review proposals, the report remains a good way to think about investment advice distribution in the medium-term - even after the changes that will end the designation. Link.
Put this way - those worried about the future of provision of retirement advice by an already-low number of AFAs should applaud the admittance of RFAs into the ante-room to the provision of such advice. By erasing the categorical difference between being an adviser in, say, home loans or insurance, only one obstacle will remain to prevent hundreds if not thousands of new advisers advising on, say, KiwiSaver. Of course, the remaining obstacle is quite large, it is competence. But some advisers were keen to advise on KiwiSaver and will eagerly take to the required study. This could be good.