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‘Compliance is not a competitive advantage’: Choice

by James Mitchell5 minute read
Choice CEO Stephen Moore

Choice Aggregation Services chief executive Stephen Moore says that unity and cooperation will be required for the mortgage broking industry to self-regulate.

Speaking to The Adviser, Mr Moore explained how there has been a recognition among mortgage professionals that the industry is continuing to “lift the bar” when it comes to quality, which is critical for a sustainable broking industry.

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“Compliance is not a competitive advantage,” Mr Moore said. “Compliance is a mandatory requirement.”

He added: “While we compete very actively in the marketplace and will continue to do so, there is an underlying basis and that is the quality the industry operates on.

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“We have this unique opportunity to be able to self-regulate, but the only way that’s possible is if the industry is united on standards. That, in particular, means [having] a recognition that the status quo is not an option. We need to lift the bar as an industry and it’s great to see that happening.”

Mr Moore has been with Choice for seven years, and the major aggregator recently celebrated its 20th anniversary.

The CEO said that he has seen brokers continue to adapt to change over the years, which gives him confidence that broker market share will continue to rise.

“Brokers have a great track record of embracing change and adapting to it, whether that is lender appetites for business or increasing regulations. Most importantly from my perspective is to adjust the business to shift to increasing consumer expectations. For me, that’s the reason why brokers have seen increased market share to 54 per cent. That’s why market share will continue to grow, because of mortgage brokers’ ability to adapt and meet customer expectations.”

Mr Moore’s comments come after Suncorp Bank’s CEO of banking and wealth, David Carter, explained why the regional lender wants to see the broker channel remain viable.

“We think customers want choice and we respect that choice, so we are supporters of a strong and professional mortgage broking industry,” Mr Carter said, adding that professionalism carries with it some requirements.

Noting that the financial advice sector had been through a “pretty tough period of review” recently, Mr Carter said that he did not believe that the broking industry would have the “same extremity of outcome”, but added that “some things will have to change”.

Mr Carter elaborated: “Hopefully, mortgage brokers recognise that there is an advantage to being self-regulated, rather than being hard-regulated. So, with the question of remuneration, I don’t think consumers are wanting to pay fees to get mortgage broking advice, and I suspect politically no one is going to ask for that to happen either, given the desire to see more competition in banking, not less.”

[Related: Remuneration reform unites aggregators]

‘Compliance is not a competitive advantage’: Choice
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James Mitchell

James Mitchell

AUTHOR

James Mitchell has over eight years’ experience as a financial reporter and is the editor of Wealth and Wellness at Momentum Media.

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