Short term credit, binary options and CFDs: ASIC names and shames initial targets of its product intervention powers
In April 2019, ASIC’s new product intervention powers came into effect. These powers enable ASIC to intervene on either a product-specific or market-wide basis when a financial product or credit product has resulted or is likely to result in significant detriment to consumers.
More Room to Play: ASIC Expands Australia's Regulatory Sandbox Regime for FinTech Start-Ups
In 2016, ASIC introduced a regulatory sandbox regime for FinTech products, allowing eligible businesses to test particular financial services or credit activities in a less onerous regulatory environment.
Know your audience: New Design & Distribution Obligations on Issuers & Distributors of Financial Products
In April this year, ASIC was granted wide-reaching product intervention powers under the Treasury Laws Amendment (Design and Distribution Obligations and Product Intervention Powers) Act 2019 (Cth) (the Act).1 In a further push to align financial products with consumers’ needs, the Act also introduced a new set of design and distribution obligations (DDOs), which all issuers and distributors of financial products to retail customers must comply with from April 2021.
Binary options and CFDs: first targets for ASIC's new product intervention powers?
As the regulatory consequences of the Hayne Royal Commission continue to flow, ASIC is preparing to flex its new regulatory muscles in the form of its product intervention powers.
Your crypto decrypt: ASIC updates guidance on ICOs and crypto-assets
The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) has updated its guidance about the regulatory regimes that may apply to initial coin offerings (ICOs), cryptocurrency and other crypto-assets.
Australia’s new initiative for a more competitive financial sector: welcome the “Corporate Collective Investment Vehicle”
Australia is proposing to introduce a new Corporate Collective Investment Vehicle (CCIV) in response to demands for an investment structure that matches the sophistication and size of Australia’s funds management industry. Public consultation on the legislative package is continuing, and Treasury has not confirmed the timing for introducing the CCIV legislation into Parliament. We believe a critical factor in the success of the new CCIV structure will be the taxation treatment available to investors. It is hoped that the proposed CCIV, in conjunction with Australia’s participation in the Asia Region Funds Passport, will improve the competitiveness of Australia’s financial sector.
"Ipso facto" amendments to the Corporations Act - what does this mean and what impact does it have on your contracts from 1 July 2018?
Commercial contracts commonly include a term which permits one party to exercise certain contractual rights (including the right to terminate) if the other party is either insolvent or at the risk of becoming insolvent. Such clauses are commonly called “ipso facto” clauses.
Small business loans: your unfair terms cheat sheet
This month ASIC released a report about how the unfair contract terms regime applies to loans made to small businesses.
Although the report focuses on the changes the big four banks have made to their standard small business loan terms as a result of ASIC’s recent reviews, the report is also critical reading for any non-bank lenders who provide finance to small businesses, as well as for small business borrowers.
Proposed changes to the Financial Sector (Collection of Data) Act 2001 - Will they affect your business?
Proposed changes to the Financial Sector (Collection of Data) Act 2001 (Act) could broaden the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority’s (APRA’s) powers to make rules for non-bank finance providers. This focus paper summarises the proposals and how the changes might affect your business.
Crowd-sourced Funding Platforms and Market Licensing - ASIC's New Approach
In our recent crowd-sourced funding (CSF) series, we outlined the implications of the Corporations Amendment (Crowd-sourced Funding) Act 2017 (CSF Act) for 3 types of CSF participants – fundraisers, intermediaries (i.e. crowdfunding platforms) and investors.
Branching out into binary options? You might have double trouble
If you are in the business of offering derivatives, you probably know that binary options are a form of derivative, and that you need a licence from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) to offer them in Australia.
Digital currency and GST: no more double taxation
In good news for digital currency in Australia, the Commonwealth Government has announced its intention to treat digital currency in the same way as money for GST purposes from 1 July 2017.
Think you've found a loophole in the 'sophisticated investor' test? ASIC says think again!
There's no easy way around disclosure issues when raising money by issuing securities or other financial products to retail investors.
Australia's New Crowd-sourced Funding Regime – Key Points for Punters (Part 3: Investors)
In this final paper of our crowd-sourced funding (CSF) series, we set out some of the key points to be aware of if you’re thinking of participating in Australia’s new CSF regime as an investor.
Australia’s New Crowd-sourced Funding Regime – Key Points for Punters (Part 2: Intermediaries)
If you caught Part 1 of this series (which related to fundraisers), you’ll know that Australia’s crowd-sourced funding (CSF) regime is set to come into force later this year.
In this paper, we set out some of the key points to be aware of if you’re thinking of participating in the CSF regime as an intermediary.
Australia’s New Crowd-sourced Funding Regime – Key Points for Punters (Part 1: Fundraisers)
At long last, Australia is set to have its own crowd-sourced funding (CSF) regime. The Bill to establish the regime passed the House of Representatives on 8 February 2017 and the Senate on 22 March 2017, meaning that the regime should come into force in about 6 months.
It’s time to play: Australia’s world-first regulatory sandbox for fintech start-ups
If you’re a fintech start-up, it could be time to get your bucket and spade ready.
One step closer to crowd-sourced equity funding (at least for Australian public companies)
The public has been offered a tantalising glimpse of Australia’s future CSEF regime with the 4 August 2015 release of the Australian Government Treasury consultation paper on crowd-sourced equity funding (CSEF).
Foreign Investment Regulation and Agricultural Land in Australia – the Landscape has Shifted
Recent changes to the Government’s foreign investment policy and imminent changes to the legislation will have a major impact on foreign investment regulation in Australia, particularly in relation to investments concerning agricultural land.
What does the 2015 Budget mean for crowd-sourced equity funding in Australia?
With the release of the 2015 Federal Budget on Tuesday sparking debate about who wins and who loses out, now is a great time to provide an update about the implications of the Budget for one of our favourite areas – crowd-sourced equity funding (CSEF).
Bitcoin Regulation in Australia: A Bit of a Task to Coin
Digital currencies, and what they mean for Australia and Australian business, are high on the agenda after the Economics References Committee of the Australian Senate (the upper house of Australia’s federal Parliament) conducted the first hearing of its Digital Currency Inquiry on 26 November 2014.
New Franchising Code – Got Questions? We’ll Answer Them
On 1 January 2015, the existing Franchising Code of Conduct set out in the Trade Practices (Industry Codes — Franchising) Regulations 1998 (Old Code) will be replaced by the new code set out in the Competition and Consumer (Industry Codes – Franchising) Regulation 2014 (New Code).
Australian companies ‘at risk’ of unwanted bidders? Deal protection measures: should we follow the English lead?
Australia – “Our land abounds in nature’s gifts”.
CAMAC's swan song - what does it mean for crowdfunding in Australia?
Depending on the Government’s response to CAMAC’s long-awaited report on crowd sourced equity funding, Australian start-ups and entrepreneurs may be set to benefit from a legislative regime that, within limits, facilitates CSEF in a way Australian law does not currently allow.
1 Jauary 2015 - Franchisors and Franchisees - Save the Date!
The Federal Government has introduced a raft of changes to the Franchising Code of Conduct which are set to take effect from 1 January 2015. In this Focus Paper, we take a look at the main amendments.