AMP sell part of AMP Capital Private, and more daily news

It has been announced that 60% of the AMP Capital private markets investment business will be purchased by Ares Management. It was previously reported the non-binding sale was off the table. The new sale proposal is a more limited joint-venture that will allow Ares to acquire the majority stake in the AMP Capital infrastructure debt, real estate and other minority interests. This is stake is valued at A$2.25 billion. AMP will own AMP Capital’s public markets businesses, with the Multi-Asset Group transferred to AMP Australia.

“Ares Management will buy 60 per cent of the AMP Capital private markets investment business in a proposed deal announced this morning.

After ditching efforts to by all of the ASX-listed AMP in February, the US investment firm has instead opted for a more limited joint-venture arrangement to be explored over the next 30 days in a just-inked non-binding heads of agreement.

Under the deal Ares would acquire the majority stake in the AMP Capital infrastructure debt, real estate and other “minority interests” valued at A$2.25 billion, according to a release issued this morning.

“AMP will retain ownership of AMP Capital’s public markets businesses, which in FY 20 made a modest NPAT contribution,” the statement says. “The public markets strategy will continue, including the Multi-Asset Group (“MAG”) being transformed and transferred to AMP Australia, and actively exploring sale or partnership opportunities for the Global Equities and Fixed Income (“GEFI”) business.” Click here to read more 

In other news

Cigna: Cigna has announced multi-benefit promotion extended to 30 June 2021

Financial Advice: Concern adviser outreach may be shackled by FMA advertising rules

nib: nib conducting another review of existing members policies' exclusions and loadings. Members with special terms on their policies will be contacted by nib directly

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AIA Vitality enhancements on the horizon, and more daily news

AIA chief partnership insurance officer Sam Tremethick shared insights on AIA Vitality to mark the anniversary of the launch. Tremethick noted that AIA Vitality has been embraced by clients and the wider community. Although AIA has reported a high level of engagement, Tremethick has said that the insurer is looking to introduce enhancements next month. Tremethick described AIA Vitality as the cornerstone of what AIA does in terms of shared values.

““We’re over a year into Vitality being launched here in New Zealand, and the great thing is that the community and our clients have really taken to it,” Tremethick commented.

 

“We’re planning to release some further updates in March which will provide some further benefits to clients, and a further update will happen in June.”

 

“We’re continuing to evolve, but we’re already seeing some incredibly high levels of engagement,” he added.

 

“The release of the Apple Watch benefit last year also increased people’s interest in the programme, so we’re certainly continuing to come up with new ideas.”

 

Tremethick says that Vitality has been key to its mission of helping Kiwis improve their health and catch illnesses early, and he says the annual health check benefit and premium incentives have been very successful in promoting these goals.

 

“For us, Vitality is the cornerstone of what we do in terms of shared values,” he said.” Click here to read more

 

In other news

Financial Advice: Financial Advice has reported that they are continuing to develop new tools regarding disclosure, and looking to release it in the next 10 days

nib: 2 Months Free Health Insurance on any new Ultimate Health Max, Ultimate Health or Easy Health policy offer ends 28 February 

MBIE: MBIE has updated the FSPR with information on FAP linking


Asteron Life on dealing with compliants, and more daily news

Asteron Life has notified advisers that it would like to know when a customer compliant relating to the insurer is brought forward. Asteron Life has said that this presents an opportunity to improve services. Asteron Life has prepared a shareable information sheet about the steps to support clients through their complaint process.

“If a client has a complaint, we want to know about it because we see it as an opportunity to put things right and improve our service for the future.

We take complaints seriously, whether it’s about our products, services or something else. Our established complaints management process - which meets regulatory and industry code of practice obligations - ensures we put the client at the heart of everything we do. It also means we are able to acknowledge and respond to a client complaint in a timely manner.”

Since you work so closely between Asteron Life and the client, you may end up being the recipient of a complaint about Asteron Life. So our team can do everything they can to resolve it, we have put together a simple one-page guide on how you can support the client and report the complaint. The guide includes an outline of how to spot a complaint, how to deal with a complaint and who to notify at Asteron Life.

This document is not for clients, but rather an easy process for you to follow. Please feel free to share the guide with your colleagues who may also receive complaints from clients. If a client would like to know more about the complaints process they can visit the Asteron Life website or call us on 0800 737 101.”

In other news

Financial Advice: Financial Advice and The Ethics Conversation to offer virtual Professional Ethics Workshops

From Insurance Business Mag: How will a vaccine impact the availability of travel insurance?

 


FADC rules adviser in breach of code standard, and more daily news

The Financial Advisers Disciplinary Committee (FADC) has concluded that an adviser breached the Code of Professional Conduct for Authorised Financial Advisers. The case was brought forward by the FMA after it begun an investigation on the adviser on 23 August 2019. The adviser, who has name suppression, operated under three different businesses offering financial advice, financial planning, investments, mortgage broking, KiwiSaver, retirement planning, residential property management, and personal and small business tax advice services. Through the FMA investigation, it was found that there were three breaches of Code Standard 15. The breaches were in relation to financial advice, personalised services, and client relationship management provided to three clients. Advisers looking to ensure that their advice processes are up to standard would benefit from our Advice Process Management service.

“The Financial Advisers Disciplinary Committee (FADC) has today published its decision regarding a case brought by the FMA. The case relates to alleged breaches of the Code of Professional Conduct for Authorised Financial Advisers.

It says that "this is a case about breaches of the Code". It is not about the integrity of the financial adviser. "There is no suggestion that she has improperly benefited at the expense of her clients, or that any client has been disadvantaged."

"But, the provisions of the Code are fundamental and adherence to them is always required."

The financial adviser still has interim name suppression, but the decision says she registered as an AFA on the FSPR in 2011. She offers a range of services including financial advice, financial planning, investments, mortgage broking, KiwiSaver, retirement planning, residential property management and personal and small business tax advice (as a tax agent) through her business. She trades under three businesses, one of which is registered on the FSPR from 2011 as an employer or principal of a financial adviser and/or Qualifying Financial Entity.

After an unrelated complaint in January 2018, the FMA took an interest in the AFA, which culminated in a monitoring visit to the premises in May 2019, and a desk based review in July 2019.

As a result of these two visits, the FMA began an investigation on August 23, 2019.

The investigation found that the AFA breached standards 12 and 15 of the Code, which relate to keeping information about personalised services for retail clients, and the requirement to have an adequate knowledge of Code, Act and laws.

The court briefing says that "The breaches are established in respect of three clients, whose identities are permanently suppressed; it consists of the adviser having failed:

  1. to record in writing adequate information about a personalised service provided to a retail client
  2. to demonstrate adequate knowledge of the relevant legislative obligations which result from the term ‘personalised service’."” Click here to read more

In other news

Cigna: Multi-benefit discount offer on Assurance Extra products extended to 28 February 2021

Cigna: Karen Ward appointed as Head of Claims

Cigna: Nicci Johnston appointed as Head of Customer Care

Financial Advice: Ready, Set, Go webinars to begin 27 January 2021

Financial Advice: Trusted Adviser mark to be publicly launched 15 February 2021


Southern Cross Travel Insurance appoints new CEO, and more daily news

Southern Cross announced that Jo McCauley will take on the role of CEO. McCauley was promoted from her role as Chief Customer Officer. McCauley brings with her years of experience in financial services and strategic leadership. Her previous roles include insurance portfolios management at Tesco Bank.

“McCauley was hired from within the business, previously heading up SCTI’s sales, product and marketing division as Chief Customer Officer since October 2017.

Bringing a wealth of experience in financial services and strategic leadership, McCauley’s background spans several years of international product and marketing experience, including managing direct-to-consumer insurance portfolios with Tesco Bank in the UK.”

McCauley has said COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the company and the travel industry but Southern Cross Travel Insurance is focused on members and employees. McCauley has noted that she is proud to have the opportunity to be the CEO. Greg Gent, Southern Cross Chairman, has said that McCauley's experience within the company will be an asset.

“McCauley said while the outbreak of COVID-19 this year has had a significant impact on SCTI and the whole travel industry, their focus is on looking after its customers and its people.

“I’m proud to have the opportunity to lead a fantastic team that continues to work hard to improve SCTI’s customer experience and processes for when the market returns."

Southern Cross Chairman Greg Gent said Jo’s experience working as part of the business will be a significant asset to SCTI.

“Jo has a diverse range of skills and leadership experience in the financial services sector, and her direct knowledge of Southern Cross Travel Insurance and its products will provide a strong foundation to lead from,” he said.”

McCauley has managed the launch of the domestic travel insurance product as CEO. As part of the product development, McCauley overlooked the policy wording to ensure that it was easy to understand. As a result, the company was the first travel insurer to be awarded the WriteMark plain language endorsement.

“In her first weeks in the CEO role, McCauley managed the launch of the business’ new domestic travel insurance product, ensuring that the policy was written in plain language. SCTI is the first travel insurer in New Zealand to have its domestic travel insurance policy awarded the WriteMark plain language endorsement.” Click here to read more

In other news

FSC: Outlook 2021 with FMA CEO Rob Everett

From Goodreturns: Adviser appears before FADC on record keeping charges

Katrina Shanks piece on Stuff: There are 150,000 unemployed, so why are we short of workers?


Partners Life announce MUM Application Pack launch, and more daily news

Partners Life has launched the MUM Application Pack. This pack works to simplify the recordkeeping process. The pack is designed to email advisers Personal Statement of disclosures and an updated quote letter after a MUM application is submitted. The letter will include detailed application information.

“Collating a client’s documents for your records has thus far been a multi-step process requiring you to save a client’s quote and personal statement separately. We have also received feedback that additional information (for example client contact details) is required in the documents outputted from MUM to ensure accuracy and completeness of your records. We have taken all this feedback on board and are happy to announce today the launch of the MUM Application Pack.

The MUM Application Pack is generated and emailed to you after submitting a MUM application. This happens automatically and removes the need to generate and save documents while busy with your client – they’ll be waiting for you in your inbox.

The Application Pack email generated by MUM combines each client’s individual Personal Statement of disclosures (labelled individually for easy record keeping) as well as a new updated quote letter containing a client’s comprehensive application information. This new quote letter includes the following features:

  • The quoted benefits and sums insured used to apply for cover
  • Client contact details captured into MUM during the application process
  • Policy ownership details captured into MUM during the application process
  • Premium payment details
  • Existing insurance covers captured into MUM during the application process
  • For covers accepted by MUM: any special terms (loadings, exclusions etc.) will be displayed
  • For clients that require further underwriting: an explanatory note will indicate further underwriting assessment is required”

Additionally, advisers are now able to send clients a copy of their Personal Statement of disclosures from MUM.

“We are also adding new functionality into MUM making it easier than ever to get your clients a copy of their Personal Statement of disclosures. In addition to the existing functionality that allows you to download the Personal Statements, you will now be able to select the option to email each client their Personal Statement directly from MUM. This single-click option ensures each client will be emailed a copy of their Personal Statement, removing the need for you to download and save each document separately.”

In other news

Partners Life: QFA set to have an updated look

Financial Advice: Financial Advice has launched the 2021 Business Partnership initiative

Financial Advice: Astute Financial and Partners Life join the Business Partner programme

FMA: FMA issues formal warning for market manipulation


Results of FSC Financial Resilience Index, and more daily news

The FSC has released the latest Financial Resilience Index results. The latest results indicate that New Zealanders are still resilient and confident about financial matters. The index examined views on five indicators: financial confidence, literacy and preparedness, job security and wellbeing. 72% of participants reported that they feel reasonably, very or extremely confident in their financial standing.

“The latest round from the FSC’s Financial Resilience Index shows that despite the last six months being one of the most challenging periods in recent history, New Zealanders have remained remarkably resilient and confident when it comes to financial matters.

The Financial Resilience Index is a major tracking survey of New Zealanders’ views on five key financial resilience indicators: financial confidence, literacy and preparedness, job security and wellbeing.

“The responses in early August show that after initial uncertainty Kiwis remained resilient throughout this unprecedented period, from the introduction of Covid-19, to living in lockdown, right through to the return to alert level one,” says Richard Klipin, FSC chief executive.

“Despite these dramatic changes, New Zealanders continued to have incredible financial confidence, with around 72% of respondents still feeling reasonably, very or extremely confident when it came to their finances.”

The index found that although there is underlying anxiety, New Zealanders remain resilient. The FSC’s findings differs from the key findings of Cigna’s COVID-19 Global Impact Study, which highlighted that the majority of its 20,000 participants have a pessimistic view on their financial position.

In other news

Cigna: Cigna Parenting Survey 2020 found that 36% of parents surveyed had a will but no life insurance

FMA revealed that full licence provisions would be released mid-November  during FSC conference

Financial Advice: New board members announced at Financial Advice NZ


Financial Advice Trusted Adviser launches, and more daily news

Financial Advice has launched its Trusted Adviser mark although the public launch is scheduled for February 2021 to coincide with the new regime. The Trusted Adviser mark looks to recognise and award advisers that meet the set requirements.

“The Trusted Adviser mark is awarded to those Financial Advice NZ members who show they have committed to qualifications and continuing professional development obligations at a level higher than that required by New Zealand law and code.

The public launch of the mark is scheduled for February 2021 to coincide with the new financial advice regime coming into effect the following month. At that time when the AFA and RFA designations disappear, qualifying Financial Advice NZ members will have this new designation to show the public that their high level of qualification, experience and ethics has been recognised by a professional body.”

Those that meet the amended requirements can now apply to have the accreditation before the new regime.

“Applications are open now so qualifying advisers can have the Trusted Adviser mark ready before the March 15 2021 new regime.

After the feedback received during the consultation phase, some of the criteria has been amended in line with your views. Please review the application details as many members are not required to apply, only register, as we already know they meet the criteria. Click here to apply

In other news


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

14 Oct 2020 – The Financial Advisers Disciplinary Committee website has again been amended such that the “Next Hearing” has been changed from 2 Nov 2020 to 19 Nov 2020, again with no further information provided other than details of the venue. https://fadc.govt.nz/upcoming-hearings/

14 Oct 2020 – Good Returns reported the launch of the Trusted Adviser mark by Financial Advice NZ, noting that the public launch of the mark is scheduled for February 2021. https://www.goodreturns.co.nz/article/976517649/trusted-adviser-mark-finally-launched.html


AIA initiative to combat underinsurance, and more daily news

AIA has announced that eligible policies allow customers to pay it forward by gifting life insurance.  In a study commissioned by AIA, it was found that New Zealanders are underinsured and rank poorly when compared to other OECD countries as they often don’t want to think about death and the financial implications of dying on loved ones.

“New eligible AIA policies come with the option to gift life insurance to a loved one

New independent research commissioned by life, health and wellbeing insurer AIA New Zealand highlights some of the reasons why New Zealand ranks near the bottom of OECD countries  when it comes to insurance protection.

The research reveals more than a third of Kiwis don’t want to think about the idea of dying and haven’t considered the financial impact it would have on their family.

Two thirds of those surveyed said that they’d never had a conversation with family about life insurance when they were growing up and one third 4 said that they don’t understand the benefits of life insurance. More than half 5 have never tackled the topic of what would happen to their finances if they were unable to work due to death, serious illness, or injury.”

Nick Stanhope, AIA NZ CEO, said that New Zealanders need to plan for the future. To help encourage the discussion and planning process AIA has announced the introduction of the Share the Love initiative. The initiative will run from 28 September 2020 and 28 February 2021 and will allow customers to gift a six-month $50,000 policy for free.

Nick Stanhope, AIA New Zealand Chief Executive, says New Zealanders need to become more comfortable with planning for their future and with having conversations about financial protection.

“Our research shows that New Zealanders generally don’t like to think or talk about these difficult but necessary topics. When it comes to protecting our finances and wellbeing our lack of financial planning is leaving us behind most other OECD countries.”

“At AIA, we want to make it easier for New Zealanders to have a conversation about why life insurance is important. It’s why we’re encouraging all new eligible policy holders to Share the Love.”

AIA’s Share the Love is a first-of-its-kind initiative in New Zealand where new policy holders are encouraged to gift a free six-month $50,000 policy to a loved one." Click here to read more

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Financial Advice: Bring in the Experts: Unlocking the Code in the New Financial Advice Regime - Part 2

Financial Advice: Special General Election Debate - 2020 Election Economic Debate

FSC: Get In Shape Webinar Series: Session 10 - Privacy - Reviewing your obligations under the Privacy Act