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ADF Financial Services Consumer Council
ASIC has recommended some
benchmark disclosure principles specif-
ically for some investments. Investment
issuers must explain why they have not
met particular benchmarks.
They also need to tell you if there
are changes to the information provid-
ed in accordance with the benchmarks.
When to use the intel
You might want to use the continu-
ous disclosure information:
before you make an investment in
unlisted shares, unlisted deben-
tures, unlisted managed investment
schemes or products quoted on the
ASX-AQUA (a platform tailored for
managed funds, exchange-traded
funds, exchange-traded commodi-
ties and structured products);
once you have made one of these
types of investments, to keep track
of how your investment is going;
when you are thinking about with-
drawing your investments; and
when you are thinking about mak-
ing additional investments.
Where to find the intel
The investment product issuer can
decide how they want to provide you
with the information, either:
by making the information available
on its website; or
by lodging the information with
Some investment issuers post the
information on their websites Others
submit it to ASIC instead.
If the business lodges the informa-
tion with ASIC, you have to pay a fee
to obtain the information.However,
check the information is not available
on the issuer's website first.
Visit ASIC's consumer and investor website,
FIDO at www.fido.gov.au or call 1300 300
630. Email ASIC with topics that interest you
A little investigation goes a long way, says
Australian Securities and Investments
Commission chairman Tony D'Aloisio.
AS ADF members, you are
used to gathering intel-
ligence before you make
And when you're in pressure situ-
ations you often rely on status reports
and proven information before decid-
ing on a course of action.
The same principles apply to man-
aging your investments.
For example, you would want to
know about it if a business that you
have invested in:
appointed an external administrator;
reduced the value of your investment
by re-valuing its key assets down; or
downgraded its forecast earnings.
These demonstrate how important it
is to have a regular flow of information
to keep track of your investments.
Material information is information
that affects the price or value of your
investment. Making this available
is called "continuous disclosure".
Companies must provide investors
with material information about events
as they happen and it is up to the
investment issuer to assess whether
they think it is indeed material.
This information is important
because it could have an impact on the
nature of your investment, how much
the investment is worth or your ability
to alter your investment.
Continuous disclosure information
for investments listed on a public mar-
ket such as the Australian Securities
Exchange (shares or derivatives) is rel-
atively easy to find on the ASX web-
site at https://myasx.asx.com.au
However, for investments not listed
on a public market, this information
is more difficult to find. With unlisted
shares, unlisted debentures and unlist-
ed managed investment schemes:
you can't always easily see the price
of the investment;
your ability to buy or sell your
investment may be restricted; and
there is no ongoing supervision by a
market supervisor, such as the ASX.
Nevertheless, even with unlisted
investments, you do have a means
of finding out current information
because it is likely the business (or
investment product issuer) must make
certain information available to you
from time to time.
The sort of information they must
provide can cover, among other things,
information relating to changes in:
financial forecasts (expected earn-
ings of the investment);
valuations of assets that form part of
ratings by external ratings agencies
(Standard and Poors);
the appointment of an external
administrator, insolvency or finan-
management of the investment;
access to funds;
corporate actions (the issue of new
ASIC's benchmark disclosures for
unlisted property trusts, unlisted
mortgage funds and unlisted deben-
It is important to
have a regular flow
of information to
keep track of your
Photo by LAC Aaron Curran
Army October 29, 2009
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