The Government Has Struck A Deal To Keep Its Financial Advice Changes, Thanks To An Epic Backdown By Clive Palmer

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Federal finance minister Mathias Cormann announced this afternoon that the government had done a deal with Clive Palmer and the Palmer United Party which will allow it to keep its controversial Future of Financial Advice changes.

A week ago, when asked if he would support the government’s push to keep its FOFA changes, Palmer told the Australian Financial Review: “They can stick it up their arse and you can quote me on that.”

Palmer had specific concerns about ensuring the financial planners were acting in the best interests of their clients. The ABC reports that further changes to the regulations, made by ministerial order to pull back some of the provisions, will be tabled in the coming weeks.

Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen told a press conference in Canberra a short time ago that the changes announced by Cormann remove the “best interest” test, and showed the government was “engaged in policy on the run”.

Palmer spoke to the media a short time ago and said he had secured concessions that strengthened protections for consumers, including that planners must state they have put the interests of the client above their own, and be transparent about fees.

“We’ve turned it right around, and now we’ve got positive statements of these obligations,” Palmer said.

He also said the government had agreed to establish a register of financial advisers.