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Call to Govt. to suspend AMP as KiwiSaver provider

KiwiSaver Accreditation Suspension

The recent call to Government to suspend AMP as accredited Kiwi Saver providers has heightened.

New Evidence from AMP clients has surfaced recently where Wellington companies have been coerced into investing their Superannuation funds into a high-risk investment, not being informed of the intensity of the risks. The investments made come “highly recommended” by a person claiming to be a ‘financial advisor’ using sophisticated sales techniques. The losses suffered are huge - around 80% of the investment. These losses have gone by unnoticed until now as a result of individuals having no practical way of redress.

To add insult to injury the same AMP advisor approached a client from Wellington Company who he was fund manager to, to invest a payout from a redundancy, which incorporated her many years of superannuation. The individual was not a client of AMP but was directly approached by the advisor as he had inside knowledge of her windfall.

It is this type of opportunist that will sell a product for commission and take no care or responsibility.

The AMP advisor is still operating and can be located through the AMP website as an accredited KiwiSaver Advisor. AMP states they investigated the advisor and has condoned his style of giving ‘financial advice’. As a result of Amps stance EUFA spokes person Suzanne Edmonds said yesterday “We are terribly concerned at AMP’s lavish advertising campaign to get KiwiSaver clients while they do not take appropriate action to protect their customers” Mrs Edmonds went on to say “The AMP complaints process is seriously flawed and is proving to be a smokescreen”

An example of AMPs complaints process, a EUFA member, an AMP customer, requested her file under the privacy act on 17 October 2007. The file has not to date been provided. The act requires the file to be provided within 20 working days. AMPs failure to provide the file is a breach of the act. The member also laid a formal complaint directly to the Managing Director of AMP on 28 October 2007 and no response has been received.

EUFA warns all individuals and company’s to contact them (EUFA) or the IFA before they commit to a Kiwisaver scheme. New Zealanders are very trusting and there are some very skillful ‘sales people’ posing as financial advisors.

EUFA members who will be meeting the Minister of Commerce next week with be discussing this serious issue, EUFA members will provide indisputable evidence to substantiate the call for suspension on AMP accreditation. EUFA believe the Government must address this with urgency and suspend AMP until they are able to provide a proper transparent complaints process that encapsulates their advisors and protect their “valued Customers”.

Yesterday, Jane Anderson of AMP confirmed AMP do not require their Advisors to belong to the IFA, the only disciplinary organisation the industry has to protect investors.

A new sub - action group, solely for AMP clients to join, has been formed under the EUFA umbrella. The group will be holding several meetings in Wellington, Horowhenua and the Manawhatu over the next few weeks. The group is preparing submissions for Government and governing bodies, where evidence will be provided to demonstrate the seriousness of the current position New Zealanders face when they are draw in by AMPs warm fussy advertising campaign.

EUFA are also turning to the industry players to join forces to protect their own industry by showing their peers that they cannot continue with unethical practices by working outside international financial advisory standards. The industry has an obligation to stop the destruction of people’s lives.

KiwiSaver is an 'opportunist advisors' dream come true!

ENDS

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