Financial advice qualification to get more popular
There are only 400 certified financial planners operating in New Zealand – but that number is expected to increase sharply as the qualification gains steam and adviser competency standards are implemented.
A surge of advisers globally have been seeking the CFP qualification, pushing the tally to 118,000 CFP-accredited advisers worldwide.
The 2008 figures reflect an average growth of 8.2% a year for the past eight years.
Stephen O’Connor, chairman of the Denver-based Financial Planning Standards Board (FPSB) which oversees the designation globally, says more local financial advisers will be forced to review their own competence and qualifications in future once new regulations come into force in October 2010.
Mr O’Connor is a New Zealander, based in Invercargill, who is FPSB's chairman for 2009.
“It is only a matter of time before New Zealand financial advisers turn to a higher level of certification to ensure they excel over and above their peers in a more regulated environment.”
Mr O’Connor says the New Zealand financial advice market is mature, but in the past this was not matched by a high number of well-qualified financial advisers. “The deregulated nature of the New Zealand market meant financial advisers were not required to seek high level certification,” he says.
Institute of Financial Advisers president Lyn McMorran says despite recent events highlighting the inexperience of many financial advisers when giving advice around finance companies, well qualified financial advisers provide vital support for individuals with little financial literacy.
The IFA is the New Zealand organisation that certifies CFP professionals.