The new financial year is underway and what a year it promises to be for brokers.
By: Jessica Darnbrough
In another 12 months the broking industry will be licensed - a major milestone for one of the fastest growing sectors of the financial services industry.
For some, the rigours of the new regime will be too much, and they will bow out once required to become accredited with ASIC in December.
No one knows how many brokers will exist as a result of the new legislation, but most agree that there will be departures.
However one thing is for sure, the brokers that remain will be much closer to the professional core that we all hope for. With brokers now registered, all that remains is the small matter of deciding which path to take - ACL or Credit Representative.
Most brokers have probably made their minds up in principle, however there will undoubtedly be a little wavering for some as D-Day draws closer.
But the year ahead is not just about licensing and the impact it will have.
The coming months are looking increasingly daunting when it comes to the outlook for funding. With our friends across the pond still deep in turmoil, and Europe still struggling to escape recession, the outlook for domestic funding looks increasingly shaky.
The majors have made it clear that their rates will have to rise further regardless of what the RBA does with the cash rate.
While pricier mortgages are inevitable there is the grimmer prospect of further tightening of lending policy. Brokers already believe that lending policy is tighter than it was a year ago, so say 80 per cent of respondents to a recent poll of The Adviser readers.
But while the year ahead is likely to be another challenge, there are still significant opportunities for brokers that are willing to step forward and adapt.
In this issue we reveal our Top 25 Brokerages ranking for 2010 and within this report lies vital information as to how the most successful businesses make their money. While the heavyweights are all up where you'd expect to find them, our best boutique businesses have fared well. What is clear is that amongst businesses large and small common trends begin to emerge as to why these brokerages are so successful.
What we are hearing from the top performing individuals and groups is that the golden goose is indeed your existing client base.
Successful businesses will therefore look to protect their greatest asset over the coming period as they know that happy existing customers are more likely to buy from their broker again and recommend their services to others.
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