Some main themes for 2018:
- The Financial Services Legislation Amendment Bill, and the entry into transitional licensing, of course
- The new law will put the focus much more on professionalism in advice - so lots of advice process stuff to work on - not just compliance, but actual advice process differentiation: how your advice process works better for clients. Focus on approved provider lists will require overhauls in how company selection is made by most advisers.
- Tied adviser sales forces will grow - partly because of the points above.
- Robo-advice, with at least one insurer will launch a robo-advice website for insurance, and others working hard to deliver something that actually gives advice in the near future
- There will be increased consumer scrutiny of the insurance market, including claims problems, limited product design, concerns about gender pricing, treatment of people with mental health issues, and treatment of applicants that are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or intersex.
- Ethical issues around banking practices (think of the current Australian investigation, and recent concerns over KiwiSaver investments) will be raised in relation to insurance
- As New Zealand dealer groups come to look more like their Australian counterparts they may attract acquisition interest
- Price-comparison websites in NZ will continue to struggle into the headwinds of a broad range of emergent digital offers - including those from adviser businesses
- Concerns will arise that reducing adviser-driven churn and switching more clients to level premium will not bring lapse rates down. Valuable as they are, their positive effects will probably be submerged by the longer run trend towards worse persistency
More can be identified, and more specific predictions are available to subscribers to the quarterly life report.