Should a firm that does not offer ‘personal financial advice’ be called a robo advisor?

QuietGrowth Personal Financial Advice be called a Robo Advisor

As we are aware, there is no regulatory rule in Australia that explicitly says that a financial services firm that does not offer ‘personal financial advice’ should not be called a robo advisor. However, we at QuietGrowth are of the view that it is prudent to avoid calling a financial services firm that does not offer ‘personal financial advice’ as a robo advisor, even if that firm provides ‘general financial advice’ digitally.

As per the Australian regulatory authority ASIC, digital advice or robo advice or automated advice is the provision of automated financial advice using algorithms and technology and without the direct involvement of a human adviser.

Reason for our view:

Some industry observers refer to firms offering financial products online (thus, ‘general financial advice’) as robo advisors, even though those firms do not provide ‘personal financial advice’ digitally.

We at QuietGrowth are of the view that calling such firms as robo advisors should be avoided. We notice that customers get confused with the accurate utility of a robo advisor when the term robo advisor is used to describe firms that do not provide ‘personal financial advice’. At a time when many people find it hard to tell the difference between ‘personal financial advice’ and ‘general financial advice’, it is preferable if the term robo advisor is used only for firms that provide ‘personal financial advice’ digitally.

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