On 29 November 2019 ASIC released its updated guidance on fees and cost disclosure for issuers of superannuation and managed investment products with the revised Regulatory Guide 97 Disclosure of fees and costs in PDSs and periodic statements (RG 97). The purpose of RG 97 is to drive greater transparency and consistency in fees and cost disclosures so that consumers can make informed, value-for-money decisions about their investments.
In releasing the package of reforms, ASIC stated in its media release that it will:
Given that the new disclosure requirements in the updated RG 97 will apply to all PDSs issued on or after 30 September 2020, it is critical to prepare for the new requirements now, given the short timeframe for implementation.
Periodic and exit statements with reporting periods commencing from 1 July 2021 must comply with the new requirements. However, where a fund is ready, an early opt-in is available for reporting periods commencing from 1 July 2020.
ASIC’s communications, including the use of the term misconduct, suggests that it will not tolerate incorrect disclosures – whether they are deliberate, due to a poor understanding of the requirements, or poor implementation processes.