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Investor News Wrap: April 2021

Page last updated: 30 April 2021

News from the month that Kiwi investors should know, including new laws and regulations, fraud and scams, independent reports and offshore developments.

Fund managers called out over fees and advertising

Investors should be wary of any fund managers advertising ‘phenomenal’ returns after last year’s market recovery, the FMA warned on 21 April.

Fund managers who promote returns for the year ended 31 March 2021 could mislead investors as those returns exclude the February-March 2020 slump when Covid-19 hit.

The FMA also provided guidance to fund managers on 14 April that their fees must give investors ‘value for money’, and be reviewed annually to ensure that’s the case.

NZ leads world with climate financial reporting law

New Zealand is the first country to introduce a law making the financial sector disclose the impacts of climate change on their business, and explain how they’ll manage climate risks and opportunities, Commerce Minister David Clark announced on 13 April.

The Financial Sector (Climate-related Disclosure and Other Matters) Amendment Bill was introduced to Parliament on 12 April and will now be considered by a parliamentary select committee. Public submissions are open until 28 May and can be made here.

Financial institutions get guidance on cyber resilience

Customers of banks, credit unions and insurers can expect better protection of their data as a result of new cyber resilience guidance issued by the Reserve Bank.

The guidance outlines the Reserve Bank’s expectations of financial institutions around their cyber resilience systems and controls, and draws heavily from leading international and national cybersecurity standards and guidelines.

Bank deposits up to $100,000 to be protected

More than 90 percent of bank savers will be “fully protected” by a proposed scheme guaranteeing deposits of up to $100,000, the Finance Minister said on 22 April.

The scheme has been approved by Cabinet as part of the Reserve Bank Act Review, and the aim is to have it running in 2023.

Dating apps are investment scammers’ latest tool

Investment scammers are increasingly using dating apps, the FMA warned, after the victim of one such scam agreed to share his story after losing around $130,000.

His case was one of six investment scams involving dating apps reported to the FMA in the year to April – after none were reported in 2018 and 2019.

The scammers’ modus operandi is to match with victims and not discuss investing at first. They then lure them into sending money for high risk and/or non-existent investments, using displays of wealth and pressure tactics.