Resolution Life acquires superannuation business

In Australia, Resolution Life has acquired a substantial superannuation client base from AIA. From a New Zealand perspective this underlines AIA's Australasian commitment to focus on the life and health business. From the media release:

'Resolution Life Australasia has agreed to acquire AIA’s Superannuation & Investments business for an undisclosed amount, describing the move as one that will “strengthen” its market presence...

S&P Global ratings says the proposed acquisition will improve Resolution Life’s scale in the Australian market and drive operational efficiencies.

“The purchase supports our assessment of the insurer as a closed-fund consolidator – a stronger business model than that of a pure run-off,” the rating agency said.

AIA says the assets it has agreed to sell were purchased as part of its acquisition of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s life insurance and investments business known as CommInsure Life. Australia CEO and MD Damien Mu says the sale reflects AIA’s intention to focus on its core business of life and health insurance and wellbeing services. “Post the integration of CommInsure Life, we commenced the next step of our transformation journey, through which we will create a simpler, faster and more connected AIA,” Mr Mu said.'


In other daily news:

  • Only 14 of 26 insurers working with advisers in Australia accept digital signatures
  • Can you produce a statement of advice in under two hours? That's what's required according to some Australian advisers in order to be profitable in that market
  • Would you like to participate in a benchmarking project to understand how your business compares to others (anonymously) in terms of key financial metrics? if so, contact us.


Quotemonster is hiring: Customer Service Support

Quality Product Research has helped crunch over 10 million insurance quotes over the last ten years via Quotemonster. We are now the leading platform in New Zealand for Advisers to quote and research the Life and Health insurance market and are looking to welcome a new Research Support member into our close-knit team based in Birkenhead, Auckland. 

You will work between 20 and 30 hours per week, alongside various other departments within our company encompassing a range of responsibilities. This role would suit someone who has an exceptional and professional level of customer service to our customers to ensure we are always providing a high level of customer satisfaction. 

Click here to find out more and to apply.

Financial Advice announce 2022 conference

Financial Advice New Zeeland has launched Ignite, the 2022 conference. The conference will be a two day event held on 6-7 September at Te Pae Christchurch.

Speakers include:

Keynote Speakers

  • Chris Riddell, Futurist. Optimist.
  • Craig Hudson, Managing Director Xero Aotearoa
  • Kamal Sarma, Expert on human connection

Lightning Speakers

  • Samantha Barrass, Chief Executive FMA
  • Victoria Devine, Multi award-winning financial adviser and founder and host of ‘She’s on the Money’ podcast
  • Tony Laker, Laker House of Travel
  • Sir Ian Taylor, one of New Zealand’s foremost technology innovators

Other speakers

  • Jonathan Pain, Global Economics Expert

Tools for your Business workshop speakers

  • Matt Church, Founder of Thought Leaders and The Leadership Landscape
  • Adrian Pickstock, Director Quad Coaching
  • Ekant Veer, Professor of Marketing, University of Canterbury
  • Shefali Pawar, Senior Research Officer, Te Ngira: Institute for Population Research
  • Gilbert Enoka, All Blacks Manager and Mental Skills Coach


  • Michael Kitces

Click here to register

“We are so excited to launch our much anticipated 2022 conference - IGNITE. An action packed two-day financial services sector event that will ignite what drives you and challenge you to take risks, explore new opportunities, step outside the box and do things differently.

Connect in person

After all of the lockdowns and restrictions, we are so excited to be able to get together again. There are plenty of networking opportunities for both attendees and sponsors, all under the one roof, at the new and vibrant Te Pae Convention Centre in Christchurch.

A programme tailored for your business

The past two years have taught us that there is no more 'business as usual' - we are living in unprecedented times. And with change and disruption, comes new opportunities and transformation. Our programme has been designed to get you and your business ready and energised to meet the challenges of today, thrive in this new 'normal' and feeling excited about the future.

High profile speakers

Our speaker line-up from New Zealand and Australia bring a wealth of experience, knowledge and energy to their keynotes and workshops, covering everything from the big picture stuff - global trends, reinvented business, and leadership in the new world, to tailored content - building a business beyond trust, maximising your brand, mental resilience - and much more!”

Next Quotemonster training session scheduled!

We invite you to join our next training session with Kelly, our National Partnerships Lead, which takes place on Wednesday, 23 March 2022 10:00 am-11:00 am 

In this introductory session, we will go over the basics of using the website including: 

  • How to directly compare two insurers for replacement business (Head-to-Head) 
  • How to download our detailed comparison and client friendly benefit overview or heat map report
  • How to add banks and non-adviser companies to your Research comparison 
  • How to find older policy documents

...and you’ll get a look at our new website.

All Industry members are welcome to join this session so please register your interest by emailing us on

Please feel free to contact us if you're also interested in a 14-day Research trial!

Happy Crunching!


The new Advicemonster!

Would you like to join us and explore the new Advicemonster statement of advice builder? Achieve complete control of your SOA within a highly automated framework which enables:

  • High levels of personalisation to each individual client
  • A new level in configuration so your SOA looks like you produced it - not identical to hundreds of other advisers
  • Automation within a framework to save you time
  • Integration with your quote and research

Let us know if you would like to join the beta test group for the new Advicemonster:

Does wealth make you buy less insurance?

Does wealth make you buy less insurance? Longstanding FSC research into the protection gap has shown that higher income households tend to have a larger protection gap as a proportion of their needs than lower income households - but in absolute terms they still buy more cover, just not enough to shrink those gaps.

Recently Statistics New Zealand released data to show the extent to which the wealth of the median household in New Zealand has risen. You can find out more at this link. Since that was published, Russia's invasion of the Ukraine has knocked share-markets and reduction in house-prices have also been reported - so perhaps the wealth increases reported are being undermined even as we speak. However, wealth remains an area where we should be interested in the effect on insurance.

Logically we might expect that different types of wealth could have different effects.

A home with a mortgage that cost $1m, the loan is $600,000, and five years is worth $1.8m, also remains the same size and utility (all other things being equal). Why would the owner want less cover? If, say, mortgage protection and income protection, were held to help preserve the asset you might expect the greater value to make it even more important to ensure that loan repayments could continue to be made.

On the other hand, a share portfolio that grew from being worth, say, $400,000 pre-pandemic but grew to $650,000 just prior to the recent market set-backs, may have encouraged the owner to believe that they have quite a bit more liquid wealth with which to off-set other risks. They may have been tempted to reduce cover, or may be less persuadable to purchasing more, at least.

But returning to recent events. Surely these remind us how fragile life is - not just our financial lives - and the importance of providing for our loved ones. The sight of Ukrainian refugees pouring into Poland, for example, surely does not make you more likely to cancel your life insurance - however tenuous the connection between those events and your feelings for your family.

Financial Advice publish report, and more daily news

Financial Advice NZ has published the results of the Better Behaviours research The report is a continuum of the 2021 report Trust in Advice. Overall, the report highlights that New Zealanders that have access to financial advice demonstrate better financial behaviours than those without access to financial advice.

“Kiwis who seek out and receive professional financial advice exhibit good financial behaviours more often than unadvised Kiwis. According to Financial Advice New Zealand’s new report, Better Behaviours - research on the value of financial advice, regardless of income level, advised Kiwis are more prepared for retirement, feel better about their financial position and are more comfortable making big financial decisions.

Building on the research report from 2020, Trust in Advice, which clearly showed that financial advice and advisers are trusted and highly valued, the Better Behaviours report measures the extent of positive financial behaviours demonstrated by advised Kiwis compared to those who are unadvised.

The results are clear: advised Kiwis exhibit better financial behaviours:

More than two thirds of advised New Zealanders say that advice has led to outcomes such as a better understanding of the risks of their financial plan (77%), a better understanding of how to achieve financial goals (74%), and they are better equipped to actually stick to these financial plans (70%).

The vast majority of advised consumers say that their advice relationship is meeting their needs. When asked whether the service provided by their adviser met their needs, a strong majority (91%) said yes to at least some extent.

Advised Kiwis are on track for better future outcomes by being better budgeters. With budgets and plans in place, advised consumers are more confident in making big financial decisions with 94% saying they are very or reasonably confident compared to 83% of the unadvised.

Higher use of KiwiSaver will drive better outcomes. Across the advised and unadvised wage/salary earners, both groups had high rates of KiwiSaver contribution (82% vs 72%).

Advised Kiwis understand the value of reviewing and making changes to their mortgage. 86% of advised Kiwis with a mortgage have reviewed that mortgage in the last year, but only 68% of unadvised have done the same. 90% believe those changes will save them money in the long term.

Higher uptake of insurance across age and income levels protects the advised. Almost twice as many advised Kiwis have Life Insurance (59% compared to 32%) and Health Insurance (55% compared to 28%) than unadvised. Usage of other types of insurance such as Income Protection and Total and Permanent Disability Insurance are more than three times higher amongst advised Kiwis than the unadvised (34% and 10%, 31% and 10%).

Understanding risk and reward drives diversification and ongoing investment reviews. Beyond KiwiSaver and property, advised Kiwis are more likely to have other investments (61% vs 35%), indicating they have a wider diversification of investment assets than the unadvised.

Advised Kiwis plan for and expect a better retirement. Across every age band, advised Kiwis feel they have a better understanding of how much money they will need in retirement (62% vs 40% overall).

The Better Behaviours results clearly illustrate that advised Kiwis are more likely to have a

documented budget and financial plan, to review their financial products regularly, to understand risk vs return, and to take-up and cancel insurance products when appropriate. They are also more likely to have positive mortgage behaviours, setting themselves up to save interest and carve years

off the life of their mortgages.

Across the board (mortgage advice, investment advice, insurance advice and financial planning), quality financial advice has given Kiwis the tools to think about their finances in a pro-active way, given them more financial confidence and control, and has had a significant effect on their sense of financial wellbeing.”

In other news

Cigna: From 2 March 2022, the traffic light indicator will be activated on My Score Card. This will display a green, orange or red status along with due dates for any requirements within the Current Learning and Declaration sections of an adviser’s score card.

From Good returns: Advice pays

Asteron Life: Asteron Life is extending the benefits of the Best Doctors service to new and existing customers with Trauma Recovery and Cancer Cover.

Latest goodreturns article: can small independent advice businesses do digital innovation?

My latest piece on goodreturns covers the question of whether digital innovation is the preserve of larger businesses with big budgets - but the good news is that even a small business can be found at this link: Can you do digital insurance advice with a tiny IT budget? - Good Returns

Cigna launches tools for adviser learning, and more daily news

Advisers that have agencies with Cigna will now be receiving notifications about new annual learning and declaration requirements. The new requirements will include annual product recertification and declarations. Advisers will be able to keep track of their progress by using the new My Score Card tool in Adviser Hub.

 "From 2 March 2022, if you’re an Adviser working with Cigna you’ll begin receiving notifications to complete new annual learning and declaration requirements.

These new requirements which include annual product recertification and declarations were first announced in December, and have been designed to help you stay on top of your compliance obligations and ensure good outcomes for your customers.

To make it easy to keep on track of the requirements, our new My Score Card tool which is connected to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Financial Service Provider Register (FSPR) as well as our training and accreditation portals will automatically change from green to orange or red based on where you’re at.

You’ll find your My Score Card in the ‘My Profile’ section of Adviser Hub. Any outstanding requirements will be clearly outlined as well as when you need to complete them.

To complete any outstanding requirements, all you need to do is click the ‘Complete your learning and declarations’ button at the top of the score card to be taken to our Adviser Training Hub.

These new requirements are part of our ongoing commitment to ensuring good customer outcomes and supporting the Advisers we partner alongside to easily stay on top of the obligations outlined in their Distribution Agreement, the Cigna Standards of Ethics and Conduct (Conduct Standards) and in The Financial Services Legislation Amendment Act (FSLAA) 2019, which is now incorporated into the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013.

If you have questions please get in touch with your Business Partnership Manager, they’ll be happy to help."




In other news

FSC: Launch of Financial Resilience Index (FRI) Research

FSC: International Women's Day - Break the Bias with Hilary Barry + special guests

FSC: Locum adviser guide launch

FSC: ESG & Workplace Savings Schemes – Should We Care?

Financial Advice New Zealand launched their financial 'better behaviour' research





When Consumer becomes anti-consumer

Sonnie Bailey at Fairhaven Wealth has written the article that needed to be written on Consumer's coverage of life insurance. When I read this article I particularly resonated with this line:

"I’m consistently disappointed with Consumer when it talks about insurance."

I believe a lot of financial advisers would agree, along with many in the insurance industry, and many clients that have had good claims paid or felt the limitations of insurance products bought on, say, price alone. Some advisers would put it less politely. My concerns have been such that I wonder about the value of their other research - what technicalities about which I am unaware, are being missed? The article is significant, an 18 minute read, but excellent on every point. Every time Consumer writes about insurance I think I shall write a detailed review of their stance. Now, I don't need to, as Bailey has written it for us. Do read it.