An ASIC probe of NAB-aligned financial advice dealer groups has found failures of disclosure of relationships between advisers, licensees and product issuers within the group.
The ASIC investigation found 150,000 customers received deficient disclosure on advice documents relating to MLC-branded financial products and those of NAB’s boutique fund stable.
In a statement, ASIC said that the defective disclosures were the result of “process error”.
Affected customers will now receive a “corrective disclosure” when they log into the MLC website for a three-month period.
“NAB has also agreed to write to the remainder of affected customers currently invested in related products, explicitly acknowledging the issue and providing corrective disclosure,” said a statement from ASIC.
Failure to disclose relevant relationships is a breach of the Corporations Act.
The investigation was part of ASIC’s wealth management project, looking into vertical integration in the six largest financial advice networks.
Update: A statement by NAB said the bank first identified the errors in 2015 and notified ASIC shortly afterwards.
NAB general manager for wealth advice Greg Miller said the bank has been on a "journey of simplification" for some years now, but he acknowledged NAB did "not execute some of the changes well".
"While simplifying some of the documentation that we send customers, and while expanding our range of investments, we omitted disclosures that are important for our customers to receive," Mr Miller said.
"We apologise to our customers, and want to assure them that they did not impact the quality of advice they received from their adviser, and there is no impact on their investments or portfolios.
"Since identifying and notifying ASIC of these errors, we have worked to correct them, and to improve our processes to try to ensure they do not happen again," Mr Miller said.
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