Macquarie boss says ASIC is ineffectual
Bill Moss, CEO of Macquarie Bank's banking and property group, says his experiences with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission's have led him to doubt its capacity to counteract corporate fraud. He said ASIC is supposed to be protecting mum and dad investors from high-pressure selling, but he asked if the ASIC were merely a “filing cabinet”.
Mr Moss said he had rung and sent letters to ASIC and not received replies – “nothing seems to happen”. The situation had led Macquarie to conduct seminars warning investors about fraud. Most fraud occurs over relatively small sums, Mr Moss stated, but the lack of resources leaves most people taken in by scams wondering whether the matter is worth pursuing through the courts.
In regard to “get rich quick” schemes, ASIC has been restricted because many are beyond its control. The unified national approach to state-based property regulation, announced by the Federal Government last week, has come too late for many investors, Mr Moss said. It's an essential first step which should have happened years ago but once the law is in place it has to be enforced.