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BFCSA: Michael West questions Tanzer: Superannuation television ads in the spotlight

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Superannuation television ads in the spotlight

Business Banking and Finance online

Date April 7, 2014  Michael West


Another skirmish has flared in the decade of hostilities between industry funds and retail funds; once again over the ''Compare the Pair'' ad campaign.  Out of the blue, a question about the industry funds' TV advertisements bobbed up in a parliamentary joint committee hearing on March 28.  "Do you have any intention to go back and revisit this current ad campaign given those concerns that have been raised?" asked Senator David Fawcett from South Australia.  "Yes," responded Greg Tanzer, a commissioner for the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.  Senator Fawcett: "Are you able to talk any further or is that .."  Mr Tanzer: "No, we are looking at the campaign in the context of the complaints that have been made including the issues that you mentioned - whether it provides a fair representation or conveys a misleading impression."

Now who could these complainants possibly be? Concerned members of the public jealously guarding our truth-in-advertising laws?  London to a brick it is the retail fund lobby - already at loggerheads with their industry counterparts over the Future of Financial Advice amendments.  Never mind that the corporate regulator has better things to do than investigate an ad campaign which, if misleading at all, must be far less misleading than most, but it has taken the unusual step of confirming publicly that it is investigating. A warning shot has been fired. 

There was a kerfuffle over the previous ''Compare the Pair'' campaign a few years ago and the industry fund lobby was forced to append a disclaimer to its ads....................In light of the submission by former ASIC lawyer James Wheeldon last week, which shone a light on the interactions between the corporate regulator and the financial services lobby, expending taxpayer resources on such a pesky complaint is not a good look.

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 Ed:  How many ads does Tanzer have to watch before he has a good look at what is going on.  Do ASIC really understand these issues?

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