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Proof that scores of licensees did not pay their ASIC levy

By Mike Taylor1 September 2021

Outstanding levies owed to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) by financial advice licensees stood at $2.4 million as at 30 June, 2021, in what is likely to be a reflection of the significant increase in the levy. 

That is the bottom line of evidence provided by ASIC to a Parliamentary Committee in circumstances where its data confirmed the tripling of the total regulatory costs for the financial advice sector from $28.260 million in 2017/18 to $59,590 million in the 2019/20 financial year. 

The $2.4 million in outstanding levies currently owed to ASIC compared to just $285,000 for the prior 12 month period and just $177,000 in 2017-18. 

The ASIC answer provides some context to the Government’s decision to ditch the current round of levy increases and freeze the ASIC levy at the $2018-19 level during which the ASIC answ4r said that total regulatory costs for the financial advice sector had been $34.071 million. 

In providing its answer, ASIC suggested that the degree to which the levy impacted individual financial advisers was in the hands of the licensees, rather than the regulator itself. 

“Each licensee may have a number of financial advisers who operate under their licence. It is a matter for the licensees whether the levy is passed on to the financial advisers who operate under their licence,” the regulator’s answer said. 

Referring to the outstanding levies owed by the financial advice sector, ASIC said that it did not have a breakdown of the number of licensees with outstanding levies, but in circumstances where it noted the average levy in 2019-20 was $18,762 it suggests that as many as 100 licensees may be in arrears 

ASIC has been asked by the chairman of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services the total revenue brought in by fees charged by ASIC to financial advisers, the total number of financial advisers issued ASIC fees, the total number of financial advisers that have paid ASIC fees, the average total dollar amount of fees charged to financial advisers and the median total dollar amount of fees charged to financial advisers. 

 

Mike Taylor

Mike Taylor

Managing Editor/Publisher, Financial Newswire

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