Regulator news

ACCC receives Telstra’s structural separation undertaking and draft migration plan Issued 1st August 2011 NR 133/11 The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has received a structural separation undertaking and a draft migration plan from Telstra. http://www.accc.gov.au/content/index.phtml/itemId/1000404/fromItemId/2332 ACCC finalises fixed line telecommunications prices and delivers pricing certainty and stability to industry Issued 21st July 2011 NR…

Read More ACCC telecommunications update

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission  issued a discussion paper (18 August 2011) seeking submissions on the service description for a Layer 2 bitstream service. The consultation is the first step in issuing a declaration that creates the ACCC’s role in regulating this service. This declaration is intended to cover the ‘last mile’ fibre to…

Read More ACCC begins public consultation on “last mile” fibre to residences

Australians who find themselves in a spot of bother with their car have a good chance of making a successful insurance claim, a review of motor vehicle insurers has found. ASIC’s review of more than 1.2 million claims made during 2009 found only 3317 (0.3%) were formally denied. The report also found a relatively low…

Read More ASIC finds high level of withdrawn motor vehicle insurance claims

ASIC urges consumers to check the credentials of businesses they deal with, following complaints it has received from consumers about two unlicensed businesses offering home loans with an upfront fee. Ezy Savings and Caveat Loans ITstrong are not registered Australian companies or businesses nor do they have an Australian office or valid business address. However,…

Read More ASIC warns about fake loan offers

Contracts for difference – CFDs – are risky financial products that should not be marketed to ordinary retail investors in CFA’s opinion. CFD’s are not ordinary shares and significantly magnify the risks of investing. CFA has welcomed ASIC’s release of new disclosure benchmarks for CFDs that aim to improve disclosure and investor awareness about risks…

Read More CFA welcomes ASIC action on Contracts for Difference (CFD)

ASIC has taken action against Shield Mercantile Pty Ltd following complaints from consumers about harassment. Among the complaints were concerns regarding unduly frequent contact with debtors, contact with third parties, inappropriate and aggressive phonecalls and inadequate internal dispute resolution policies and procedures. ASIC spokesperson, Greg Kirk, said: ‘Creditors and debt collectors can’t behave in a…

Read More Action on debt collection complaints

ASIC has released proposals for modifying the training requirements for credit representatives who provide credit assistance to consumers on home loans. The proposals address some recent industry concern about the training requirements. ASIC believes the proposals strike an appropriate balance between the interests of confident and informed financial consumers and the regulatory obligations of market…

Read More ASIC considering changes to home lending training requirements

ASIC has successfully completed the major initial licensing of consumer credit businesses as part of the transition to the new national consumer credit laws. ASIC Commissioner, Peter Boxall, said only licensed people or businesses can carry on consumer credit activities now. ‘If you are getting credit or getting advice or assistance on credit make sure…

Read More ASIC refuses four applications for credit licenses and puts conditions on others

On 1 July ASIC announced that it had commenced criminal proceedings against officers of the Wespoint companies for breaches of the corporations act. In a separate matter Rundle was found guilty by a Sydney jury of making misleading statements to a financial institution in support of a $71 million credit facility to fund a Westpoint…

Read More Westpoint and other recent ASIC enforcement actions

CFA welcomes recent action by the ACCC to respond to misleading advertising in the communications sector. In July the Federal Court  ordered Optus to pay $5.26 million in civil pecuniary penalties for breaches of the Trade Practices Act through the advertising of  various broadband internet plans. In recent months, the ACCC has successfully taken enforcement…

Read More Optus latest telco to be stung for misleading advertising

Allphones penalised $45,000 for contempt of court The Federal Court has penalised Allphones Retail Pty Ltd $45,000 for contempt of orders following action by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. For more information see the ACCC website. Optus penalised $5.26 million for misleading broadband advertising The Federal Court has ordered Optus to pay $5.26 million…

Read More ACCC Enforcement Announcements, July 2011