The super fund is alleged to have made misleading statements to its members.
ASIC has announced that Maritime Super has paid $26,640 to comply with two infringement notices concerning alleged misleading statements made to members about its investment partnership with Hostplus.
Maritime Super stated that its investment partnership with Hostplus would result in reduced overall investment management fees for its members in a significant event notification and a newsletter sent to members between March and June last year.
ASIC said it was concerned these statements were misleading because the investment partnership resulted in increased investment costs for 77 per cent of Maritime members and higher investment fees for six of Maritime’s 11 investment options.
“The superannuation industry is going through a period of consolidation and change. As such, it is crucial that consumers and fund members are provided accurate information so that they can make informed decisions about their super,” said ASIC deputy chair Sarah Court.
“In this case, we were concerned that Maritime members may have been misled by the communications about fees.”
Maritime issued a corrective disclosure to members in August last year at the request of ASIC and confirmed that some Maritime members may face higher investment fees and costs as a result of the investment partnership.
“ASIC has a number of regulatory tools to address alleged misconduct where we are concerned that consumer harm may occur, including the issuing of infringement notices,” said Ms Court.
“We remain focused on protecting consumers’ interests and will take enforcement action where necessary to ensure that superannuation trustees comply with their obligations to provide accurate information to members.”
Jon Bragg is a journalist for Momentum Media's Investor Daily, nestegg and ifa. He enjoys writing about a wide variety of financial topics and issues and exploring the many implications they have on all aspects of life.
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