Australian regulator bans former Spectrum Wealth adviser from industry for five years

Maria Nikolova

ASIC found that Sean Philip Lewis failed to comply with financial services laws, including by failing to provide advice that was in the best interests of his clients.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) today announces that it has banned Sean Philip Lewis from providing financial services for five years. This follows an ASIC surveillance of Mr Lewis’ advice while he was an authorised representative of Spectrum Wealth Advisers.

The regulator has determined that Mr Lewis failed to comply with financial services laws, including by failing to provide advice that was in the best interests of his clients and failing to provide advice that was appropriate for his clients’ objectives.

Mr Lewis advised most of his clients to use a Limited Recourse Borrowing Arrangement (LRBA) to fund the purchase of real property through a self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF). Mr Lewis also gave insurance advice to all clients.

When providing this advice, Mr Lewis did not professionally and independently assess whether using an SMSF and borrowed funds to invest in property was an appropriate strategy for each of his clients. He also did not adequately investigate or offer any alternative investment strategies that may have provided greater diversification of risks.

ASIC also found that when providing insurance advice, Mr Lewis prioritised his own interests over that of his clients.

Mr Lewis has the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of ASIC’s decision.

Let’s recall that in April 2020, ASIC announced the imposition of permanent ban on another former representative of Spectrum Wealth Advisers – Jane Elizabeth Myers. She was an authorised representative of Spectrum Wealth between October 2013 and March 2017. ASIC determined that Ms Myers is not adequately trained or competent to provide financial services and that she is likely to contravene a financial services law in the future. Her conduct demonstrated serious incompetence and irresponsibility, the regulator said.

Read this next

Inside View

Broadridge report finds 27% of firms’ overall IT budget goes to digital transformation

“A new chapter in digital transformation is emerging. In our work with clients across the financial services industry we see leading firms are already reaping the benefits from digitalization and the use of technologies such as AI and blockchain/DLT, as they adapt to economic headwinds and new competitive dynamics”

Executive Moves

Ripple announces Monica Long as President

“I’m incredibly honored to take on the role of President at Ripple as we expand deeper into crypto-enabled services like liquidity, settlement and custody.”

Executive Moves

Arabesque AI appoints Carolina Minio Paluello as CEO

“Arabesque AI is uniquely positioned to service the asset management industry’s need to meet the growing market demand for hyper customised portfolios.”

Industry News

SEC Commissioner Mark T. Uyeda says standardized ESG measures are doomed to fail

“Because ESG ratings may be divorced from matters of financial materiality, they can reflect a particular political or social agenda.”

Industry News

Worldline launches digital payments suite in India

“Our low-cost innovative offering SoftPOS will empower SMBs in a big way to accept digital payments affordably.”

Technology

cTrader Web 4.5 Presents Guest Mode, Multiple Charting and Copy Improvements

Spotware has announced the release of its cTrader Web version 4.5, which comes with a whole range of features and improvements for all cTrader users.

Technology

SteelEye suggests integrated surveillance as Morgan Stanley fines employees over WhatsApp

“The use of integrated surveillance means firms can avoid unwanted regulatory attention by enabling them to self-report and self-remedy more efficiently when malpractice is flagged.”

Industry News

ASIC bans Gregory William Finerty for unlicensed FX algo trading bot

Bradford AI leased an algorithmic trading program known as ‘Robot 1’ to trade on the FX market, using an Australia-based over the counter contracts for difference (CFD) broker.

Opinion

With the recent changes to St Vincent licensing, what will the future trends be for licensing in 2023?

New St. Vincent and the Grenadines regulations came as somewhat of a shock for those brokerages that are only regulated in SVG

<