ASIC has suspended the Australian financial services (AFS) licence held by Halifax Investment Services Pty Ltd (Halifax) until 10 January 2020.
Halifax was a financial services licensee headquartered in Sydney with a partially-owned subsidiary in Auckland, New Zealand.
The suspension follows the appointment of Morgan Kelly, Stewart McCallum and Phil Quinlan, of Ferrier Hodgson, as joint voluntary administrators of Halifax, appointed on 23 November 2018.
The terms of the AFS licence suspension allow the Halifax AFS licence to continue in effect for the following purposes only:
- to ensure that clients of Halifax continue to have access to an external dispute resolution scheme;
- to ensure that Halifax continues to be required to have arrangements for compensating retail clients, including the holding of professional indemnity insurance cover; and
- to allow for the termination of existing arrangements with clients of Halifax.
Investors seeking information should visit ASIC’s dedicated page on Halifax updates.
Under the Corporations Act, ASIC has the power to suspend or cancel an AFS licence, without holding a hearing, where the AFS Licence is held by a body corporate which is placed under external administration.
The company has a right to seek a review of ASIC’s decision at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.
ASIC is Australia’s integrated corporate, markets, financial services and consumer credit regulator.
The ASIC Act requires us to:
- maintain, facilitate and improve the performance of the financial system and entities in it
- promote confident and informed participation by investors and consumers in the financial system
- administer the law effectively and with minimal procedural requirements
- enforce and give effect to the law
- receive, process and store, efficiently and quickly, information that is given to us
- make information about companies and other bodies available to the public as soon as practicable
- take whatever action we can, and which is necessary, to enforce and give effect to the law.