To say a NAB adviser is a salesman because they work for NAB is not how we see our advisers. The reality is product selection is the final part of an extensive and sophisticated process of giving advice. I think there is some implications for that product selection part of the process, the last 10 per cent, and if price is one of the measures of what’s best, then that might be taken account of. Of course, there’s a huge number of other things that come into value. It’s likely over time that this will expand. But I don’t think we should say that because you happen to be branded NAB, you’re offering a fee for service, that fully qualified people under the regulations of the day are going to be branded salesmen. That would be a bit dangerous. Colin Tate: Garry, if I went to an Industry Fund Services financial planner now, would they ever recommend anything other than an industry fund? Garry Weaven: Well, they do, but on rare occasions. Just like the banks. You know, in fairness, they will be affected at the margin by these laws. We’ve always acknowledged that. We’ve always said that’s appropriate.
John James (managing director, Vanguard Investments Australia): I’ve been six years out of Australian financial services, and in the last six months Vanguard has been doing some global work on looking at all the financial services industries around the world. First thing I want to say is that Australia is number one. As far as transparency and the involvement of the regulator, we are miles in front of what’s happening globally. On the question of fiduciary standard, one of the things we see in Australia is open architecture platforms, which are certainly one way that fiduciary standards can fit in – we’re not seeing that globally. We’re seeing very closed structures, high commissions, a lot of rebates. Martin Codina: That’s a perfect segue to what I want to say, which was I think there’s a bit of a misnomer, that an adviser sitting in an MLC business is effectively providing automatic referrals to MLC products.
That’s just not the case. If you look at any one of the platforms, the number of products that are available, where the flows go, I think you’ll find the house actually loses rather than gains, in terms of the majority of those flows. So I think it’s an important point to make, and ‘Open Architecture’ is exactly how we described it, and every time we’re overseas people describe that system. The conversation then broached keeping the public ‘on-side’ with the SG lift, in the face of the campaign against the Resources Super Profit Tax. Fiona Reynolds (CEO, AIST): I think the reason people are accepting these changes is because they see it as the employer paying, and it’s not coming out of their pockets. We have to be careful in how we approach these discussions with people. I think we can certainly say what I’ve been saying, that in the period from ’92 to 2002, we didn’t see small businesses close, we saw that wages went up, we saw that labour costs came down.