The Royal Commission into Financial Services

The Royal Commission into the banking and financial services industry is only in its early stages yet the inquiry has already uncovered shocking revelations of dishonesty and misconduct within some of Australia’s largest financial institutions.

To date, the Commission has heard evidence of appalling behaviour at Australia’s major banks – the so-called big four – the Commonwealth Bank, Westpac, ANZ, National Australia Bank, and also AMP.

This includes evidence of:

  • Hundreds of cases of misconduct related to financial advice.
  • Misappropriating customer funds.
  • Misleading or deceiving customers.
  • Falsifying documents including forging customers’ signatures.
  • Allegations of bribery to achieve sales targets.
  • Charging clients fees for services that weren’t delivered.

Shocking revelations are being uncovered on a daily basis, and while the inquiry still has some way to go, it is clear that in some cases fee revenue from their advice businesses has been a priority when considering the products and services they recommend to their clients.

There is now a clear message about the possible risks of seeking financial advice from a large financial institution that primarily promotes their own products and services.

Our Licensee, Capstone Financial Planning, has long maintained that there is an inherent conflict of interest between sales and advice when it comes to the financial advisory services offered by the large financial institutions and their associated advisers. There is no doubt that the revelations currently unfolding serve to confirm these suspicions and concerns.

I wish to assure you that Strategic Retirement Solutions is a privately-owned financial advisory and wealth management firm. We are an authorised representative of Capstone Financial Planning, a 100% privately-owned national Australian Financial Services Licensee that has no alignment to any bank or financial institution.

When we assess the most appropriate option for your needs and circumstances we do so with no bias towards any particular product provider.

When we recommend a product or service to you it’s because we genuinely believe that particular product or service is the most appropriate solution for your specific needs as we understand them to be.

We are not incentivised to recommend any particular product or service, nor are we compelled to participate in, nor are we motivated by, reaching any sales targets.

Our reputation is important to us. We will always act in your best interests first and foremost.

Should you have any issues or concerns, or questions in relation to our services and advice, please feel welcome to contact me.

Yours sincerely

Helen Stevenson
Strategic Retirement Solutions