ASIC has released a consultation paper and a draft regulatory guide containing best practice for the advertising of financial products and financial advice.
The guidance has been prepared to help promoters and publishers present advertisements that are accurate, balanced and help consumers make appropriate decisions about financial products and services.
ASIC also reminds promoters and publishers that they have legal obligations to not make false or misleading statements or engage in misleading or deceptive conduct.
What does the guidance apply to?
The guidance will apply to all advertising, including print, radio, television, outdoor advertising such as billboards, social media sites, direct mail, telemarketing and seminars.
Regulated documents such as PDS or FSGs are not classified as advertising materials within the guidance.
The guidance will focus primarily on risk products, and will apply to both general and personal product advice.
ASIC plans to release additional guidance for credit providers and providers of credit services at a later date.
What are the good practice guidelines?
ASIC has proposed a number of good practice guidelines, including ensuring that the advertising:
- Clearly explains the nature of the product
- Provides a balanced message about the returns, benefits and risks of the product
- Provides clear disclaimers that don’t require a consumer to go to another website or document to access them
- Provides a realistic impression of all fees and costs
- Avoids industry jargon
- Doesn’t create an unrealistic expectation in the consumer of what the service can achieve
ASIC plans to release a regulatory guide in January 2012.
Feedback on the Consultation Paper is due by 25 October 2011
Comments can be sent to:
Senior Lawyer, Strategic Policy
Australian Securities and Investments Commission
GPO Box 9827
Melbourne Vic 2011
Facsimile: (03) 9280 3444
For further information:
The full ASIC media release is here: 11-186MR
Link to Consultation Paper 167: Advertising financial products and advice services: good practice guidelines: here Note: The Draft Regulatory Guide is included with the Consultation Paper.