ASIC head lashes out at media

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Australian Securities and Investments Commission chairman Greg Medcraft has posted two videos on Youtube defending himself, ASIC and his travel as International Organisation of Securities Commissions chair.

“Recent media reports have tried to cast doubt on ASIC's good work and smear our staff and culture. These reports coincide with the Senate enquiry into our performance,” Medcraft said in the video.  

ASIC is being scrutinised over its handling of a string of corporate collapses and financial scandals, including the misconduct of at least seven financial planners employed by the Commonwealth Bank.

The Senate Inquiry into ASIC's operations and performance has received more than 200 submissions, many of which were highly critical.

But ASIC’s “excellent staff” has done “much to be proud of”, providing the Senate Inquiry with three submissions outlining what good has been done as well as what can be improved, Medcraft said.

“Here are a few stats to just reflect on some of our work. In the last three years ASIC has completed over 4,000 surveillances and 554 investigations. We’ve banned 168 people. We’ve completed 73 civil and 79 criminal proceedings.

“And most critically and crucially, we’ve obtained 349 million in compensation for investors and consumers.”

ASIC will be fronting up to the senate enquiry and answer every question posed, Medcraft said.

“We welcome the enquiry and all the submissions people have made. We’ve read them and we want to use this information to do a better job. Enquiries like this are all part of our accountability to the parliament and that is something we take very seriously.”

In a separate video, Medcraft defended his role as the head of the International Organisation of Securities Commissions, which he was elected to earlier this year – in particular his taxpayer-funded business class travel.

His chairmanship of IOSCO has riled politicians and regulators, who say he should spend less time jetting off overseas and concentrate on Australia's problems, in particular those which face ASIC.

In the first 10 months of this year Medcraft has spent at least 51 days overseas. But Medcraft said the travel benefits Australia as he is making headway on cybercrime and assisting regulators to develop market based financing.

“So many issues facing Australia are global issues and need a global response. Also, we want to make sure global initiatives work for Australia and not against us. My work in leading IOSCO is about thinking ahead and taking action now for the longer benefit of investors in Australia and right around the world.”

He says, as an Australian, he is helping shape the international global agenda. “That is, we have an Australian looking out for Australia.”

See the videos below:
  • hesreto on 16/01/2014 3:43:03 PM

    Give us a break Mr Medcraft... We don't want to hear your sob stories of your "overseas holidays" on our money... when we have shared with you our desperate pleas that have cost us our lives and lifestyles only to be ignored by you... Karma mate.. Karma.
    Why not do an honest day's living like the rest of us and stay at your desk looking at your internal issues instead of continually making excuses...

  • David Radford on 5/12/2013 2:48:30 PM

    ASIC, might say they do good work, when I reported a director three times over sixteen years for repeated breaches of the Corporations Act which included using 95 Corporate Entities to borrow, liquidate, avoid the debts start a new one, totalling more than $128m. Turning a huge amount of Capital in Income to buy his huge family properties, expensive private school education, ruined 3 legal firms and running courts into more than $20m of wasted Court resources. ASIC sent three responses, all the same. In words to the effect "We do no intend to take any further action in this matter, however if you find there are any further breaches of the Corporations Act please don't hesitate to advise ASIC of these breaches.
    Gerard Ryle wrote 119 Articles in the SMH and Age over a four and a half year period about Tim Johnson the Fire Power Man until ASIC did something.

  • GV on 5/12/2013 1:50:36 PM

    The statistics quoted on achievements is laughable because in the scheme of the unlawful activities that they are aware of the results are negligible. If they don't have the staff ASIC should outsource the investigations and tender them out to a panel of private organisations who would be remunerated on a success basis on companies being investigated. Whereas now they are just happy to close the file and don't lift a finger to take action. We all know that it is unlawful to harbour criminal activity which in affect is what ASIC is doing every time it takes no action where action needs to be taken.

  • Rob on 5/12/2013 9:44:44 AM

    Great laugh this - made my day.
    Greg you say you have read the submissions. But you will not act on them, you know that and we know that. We now all just try to get on with business and pretend you do not exist. Only change is that now I have to pay for the coffee when a BDM visits.

  • GH on 4/12/2013 12:04:16 PM does it feel, Greg....especially if you believe you've done the right thing and are being unfairly treated? How did that bloody boot get on the other foot? Well, at least in your case, your income won't suffer because of it! But don't feel bad's all for your own good......isn't that right?

  • Jon Dixon on 3/12/2013 4:14:35 PM

    Fly business class Greg....I would, as OS trips are bloody taxing and the free Qantas goodies do not exceed $200 and of course if it is your best interest to fly with another carrier than Qantas I say use them !

  • Andrew Dudman on 3/12/2013 2:21:39 PM

    Another public servant living ugh on the hog while lecturing the rest of us - pathetic

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