ASIC extends transition period for some fees and costs disclosures

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has extended the transition periods for certain fees and costs disclosures for superannuation funds and managed investment schemes. This is due to upcoming consultation on the proposals arising out of recommendations made in the review of the fees and costs disclosure regime in Report 581 Review of ASIC Regulatory Guide 97: Disclosing fees and costs (REP 581).

The ASIC Class Order [CO 14/1252] provided for certain disclosure obligations in relation to periodic statements for both superannuation and managed investment products for reporting periods prior to 30 June 2018 to operate differently for reporting periods after 30 June 2018. Similarly, the class order also permitted superannuation trustees to deal with property operating costs in product disclosure statements (PDS) given before 30 September 2018 by providing details of these in the ‘Additional explanation of fees and costs’ part of the PDS rather than incorporating them into the figure disclosed as ‘investment fees’.

In November 2017, ASIC appointed an external expert to conduct a review of the fees and costs disclosure in superannuation and managed investments (Refer 17-369MR).  Given the review, in December 2017, ASIC extended the transition dates by one year to their equivalent dates in 2019. This was to ensure that further costs in relation to system changes need only be incurred by industry in relation to implementing the fees and costs disclosure requirements that emerged after ASIC’s consideration of the review’s recommendations.

In July 2018, the expert’s review was released as REP 581 (Refer 18-217MR).  ASIC expects to soon publish a consultation paper in relation to the recommendations made in REP 581.  For this reason, ASIC has decided to again extend the transition dates by one further year to their equivalent dates in 2020 so that industry need not incur additional time and expense where ASIC is consulting on proposals that could, for example, change the treatment of property operating costs.

ASIC expects to release the consultation paper in January 2019.

© Australian Securities & Investments Commission. Reproduced with permission.