The Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) has hit out at “so-called consumer groups” for withdrawing from an industry forum at a time of great importance to the industry.

FBAA managing director Peter White accused the quitters of a ‘huge dummy spit’.

“Since when do legitimate advocates take their bat and ball and go home because they disagree with others?”

It’s been reported that Choice, the Consumer Action Law Centre, Financial Counselling Australia and the Financial Rights Legal Centre have left the forum which exists to improve customer outcomes, preserve and promote competition and improve standards of conduct.

“It’s ironic that they are citing the alleged failure of the group to commit to acting in the best interests of ¬borrowers, when that is the very cornerstone of the success of brokers.

“The industry has worked well with ASIC, the Productivity Commission and Treasury to bring even greater transparency and accountability. Commissioner Hayne criticised banks for their lack of transparency and culture of greed.”

“Choice is meant to stand up for consumers, but they have been found out for having commercial conflicts of interest that may have influenced their reviews. They clearly don’t understand this industry, but they seem to understand vacuum cleaners and dishwashers so maybe they should stick with these.
“The FBAA has led from the front in ensuring borrowers’ interests are the primary driver in every case. Not only are we not blocking meaningful change, as claimed by Choice, but brokers are leading the change.”

“The big banks will be the big winners if brokers are forced out of the industry, and borrowers will pay more in costs and hidden fees, so these consumer groups have basically abandoned the people they claim to represent.”