Free financial advice as Kiwis take greater interest in finances

The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) has partnered with Financial Advice New Zealand to make free and generic financial advice available in Hamilton, as New Zealanders take a greater interest in their finances and investments due to the impact of COVID-19.

The FMA and Financial Advice New Zealand are hosting a pop-up centre offering free money advice at Hamilton’s The Base mall on Saturday, 15 August, 9am – 6pm as part of Sorted Money Week 2020.

Called ‘Finsightful’, the pop-up will be staffed by financial advisers who will provide generic financial advice to members of the public. Topics could range from how to start investing and pay less interest on a mortgage, through to understanding personal insurance and choosing the right KiwiSaver fund.

The theme of Money Week this year is ‘just wondering’; reflecting the many money questions New Zealanders have during this time of uncertainty. Nearly half of New Zealanders (45%) are concerned about the impact of COVID-19 on their personal finance situation, according to the FMA’s Investor Confidence Survey, released last month.

Gillian Boyes, FMA Manager – Investor Capability, said the FMA was keen to promote the value of financial advice, particularly due to the COVID-19 crisis.

“Whether it’s a full financial plan, help with KiwiSaver or other investments, budgeting support or using online tools, sound advice can be hugely beneficial in times of economic and financial uncertainty,” she said.

“If you’re making important financial decisions, speaking to a financial adviser can be a great way to help navigate your financial path. We wanted to facilitate these free sessions to introduce people to financial advice, or give them a taste of what it can offer.

“Getting value from financial advice doesn’t just include seeing a financial adviser – it could be accessing the wealth of information online or at your local Citizens Advice Bureau or library, using online calculators and tools, talking to the folk at MoneyTalks, listening to podcasts or reading personal finance books.”

Katrina Shanks, Financial Advice New Zealand CEO, said many New Zealanders have not spoken with a financial adviser so the event will provide Waikato residents a unique opportunity.

“The impact of COVID-19 has highlighted the need for financial resilience, such as building up an emergency fund, understanding personal insurance, and making sure your KiwiSaver is set up right to work for you. A financial adviser can help you navigate all of these things and more.”

Financial advice findings from FMA Investor Confidence Survey:

  • 11% of investors have been working with a financial adviser to review their investments.
  • 12% of investors are looking for an adviser to review their investments.
  • Those looking for an adviser to help review their investments are significantly more likely to be male, investors across multiple products, and Asian.

‘Finsightful’ event details

What: “Finsightful”: Get your money questions answered free for Sorted Money Week

Where: The Base shopping centre, Te Rapa, Hamilton (by Cotton On Kids)

When: 9AM – 6PM, Saturday 15 August 2020

Who: Financial advisers, Financial Advice New Zealand, Financial Markets Authority

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