ASIC voices concerns over SMSF social media ads

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A number of companies have taken steps to remove or amend social media advertising of SMSFs following ASIC concerns.

ASIC raised concerns regarding SMSF advertising on social media by Urban Seed Project Marketing Pty Ltd (Urban Seed), Skybridge Portfolios (Skybridge) Pty Ltd and Tatnell DLS (Tatnell) Pty Ltd.

Skybridge advertised on its Facebook page with representations such as “Get yourself a SMSF for your Super – from $99, fully advised. No industry fund can compete with this” and “Want your Super Fund to replace your current income from work? You need to look at a SMSF – highest account balances out of all Super Funds.”

Tatnell, meanwhile, ran YouTube videos including representations that favourably compared SMSFs to other super funds without explaining or referencing a range of factors that impact SMSF performance.

Finally, Urban Seed ran YouTube videos linked to a promotional website including representations about "SMSF qualified" and "SMSF friendly" properties for sale.

All three companies have removed the relevant posts, and have ensured that future marketing will undergo an appropriate review and approvals process. All three fully cooperated in responding to ASIC's concerns, the regulator said.

"Accuracy in advertising is integral to maintaining consumer trust and confidence in the SMSF sector. ASIC will continue to take action where we  see advertising that might mislead consumers, whether that advertising is on social media or more traditional media," ASIC deputy chair Peter Kell said.

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