17 Apr 2013

FMA tells NZers to spread their investment risks

8:10 pm on 17 April 2013

The Financial Markets Authority wants to play an educative role in persuading New Zealanders not to invest everything they have in housing.

Authority chief executive Sean Hughes said that New Zealanders shouldn't expect house prices to always go up.

He said the authority is concerned that New Zealanders are investing in single asset classes dominated by property, rather than spreading their risks across a range of assets.

Meanwhile, the FMA may drop some of its investigations of failed finance company executives.

Mr Hughes said there were less than 10 investigations still running and some were related to misconduct and events which occurred in the last decade.

"We've got to make sure that we've got the capacity to deal with today's issues while at the same time sending a strong message about what we see as inappropriate behaviour," he said.

"There will be a few more of those finance company cases to run. It's unfortunate - they do take up time - but we want to make sure that people feel that they have been listened to and that we are taking stern action where necessary."