An old colleague of mine from Melbourne, Australia, sent me some information that his country's financial planners have just implemented new guidelines to help prevent conflicts of interest and to improve confidence in the financial planning sector.

Actually, he says that The Financial Planning Association's (FPA's) "Principles to Manage Conflict of Interest" has become effective over an 18-month period that commenced July 1. Its topics cover the cost of advice, remuneration, benefits, product suitability, and corporate governance within a financial planning business. Jo-Anne Bloch from the FPA, points out that the guidelines should help the more than five million Australians who use a financial planner.

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