BREAKING: MFAA heralds support for ASIC crackdown

by Adam Smith23 Jan 2014
The MFAA has heralded its support for a recent wave of ASIC bans.

Following this morning's announcement by ASIC that it had banned former Sydney broker and real estate agent Hyuk Hwang, along with  Equity Financial Management head Anthony Bergin, MFAA CEO Phil Naylor has said the association supports ASIC's crackdown on rogue operators.

"We are pleased that ASIC has stepped up its activities in patrolling the mortgage industry fringe dwellers who prey on unsuspecting and desperate members of the community. The MFAA is vigilant in ensuring that all of its 10,000 members exhibit the highest professional standards, and we have in place a strict and independent disciplinary procedures and very high education and accreditation standards," Naylor said.

ASIC deputy chairman Peter Kell said the watchdog had taken action against eight credit providers in the last three months, resulting in two convictions, three permanent bannings and three bannings totalling 11 years, a number he called "unacceptably high". Naylor pointed out that the MFAA has also taken action to rid its membership of unscrupulous brokers, saying that the MFAA had previously cancelled the memberships of six of the eight people banned, and that the other two were never members. The association also pointed to the suspension of six members in the 2012-13 financial year, two of whom were later expelled.

"We have a very strong regime in place to ensure our members operate within the law and our rules, and I urge all members of the community seeking a loan to contact one of the MFAA’s accredited credit advisers," Naylor said.

In spite of the bannings, Naylor argued that the vast majority of brokers continued to operate ethically.

"It is a shame that a few bad apples are bringing the mortgage broking industry into disrepute and we will continue to support ASIC in policing the sector."