Code of Conduct consultation begins

9 August 2013

The Code Committee for Financial Advisers has begun consulting on proposed changes to the Code of Professional Conduct for Authorised Financial Advisers.

Code Chair, David Ireland, says with the Code in force since December 2010, it was timely to initiate a review. In particular the Committee was keen to review the effectiveness of the Code in light of its objectives and experiences to date.

“Overall, the Committee is comfortable that the Code provides a sound, principled set of professional standards for authorised financial advisers (AFAs) to adhere to. But there is always room for improvement ,” said Mr Ireland.

Key changes recommended by the Committee include:

  • Amendments to code standard 1 (client first) to reinforce it is the overarching code standard
  • A replacement conflict of interest code standard
  • Changes to support a new qualifications framework (likely to be introduced next year) that will increase minimum standards of competence, knowledge, and skill for AFAs
  • Introducing more flexibility in continuing professional training and clarifying requirements for structured training

Mr Ireland said the Committee is particularly interested in feedback on how well the current suitability and basis for advice code standards are working.

“There has been a lot of industry feedback about how these may be limiting access to professional financial advice. This is not a desired outcome, so it’s very important we get some detailed feedback on these points,” said Mr Ireland.

Industry participants and consumer representatives are encouraged to attend public meetings about the Code being held in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Submissions on the proposed changes close on 6 September 2013.


David Ireland on 021 343 615 or email

The Code Committee for Financial Advisers is appointed by the Financial Markets Authority under the Financial Advisers Act 2008. It developed and now maintains a Code of Professional Conduct for Authorised Financial Advisers (AFAs). The Code establishes minimum standards of competence, knowledge and skills, ethical behaviour and client care, along with minimum requirements for continuing education, and training, for AFAs.

The current members are: David Ireland (Chair), Ross Butler, Shane Edmond, David Russell, Professor Dimity Kingsford-Smith, Gary Young and Michael Staal.

Consultation information can be found at the Committee website:

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