On Wednesday, March 23, ASIC said it was looking for “misleading representations of performance and risk” in promotional material, including search engine advertising, targeting retail investors and possibly wholesale investors” unwary”.
ASIC said its oversight stems from concerns that consumers seeking reliable or high returns are being misled about the performance and risks of the funds they invest in.
“ASIC remains concerned that sponsors of managed funds continue to target consumers, particularly retirees or those contemplating retirement, with ambiguous or misleading representations of performance and risk,” the statement said. ASIC Vice President Karen Chester.
“Where we identify fund marketing of concern, we will also review corresponding product disclosure statements, websites, and target market determinations to assess whether the marketing claims are misleading.”
The regulator has already taken action against fund managers for misleading marketing or advertising, including Mayfair 101 which was fined a combined $30 million last year.
La Trobe Financial Asset Management was also fined $750,000 in November on the same charges.
“ASIC is committed to protecting consumers when deceptive marketing practices work against their interests,” Ms Chester said.
“If we identify misleading behavior, we will take swift action to disrupt behavior by deploying all of our regulatory tools – from administrative intervention to enforcement action where necessary.”
Neil is the Associate Editor for Wealth Headlines including ifa and InvestorDaily.
Neil is also the host of the ifa show podcast.