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Tuesday 4 August 2015

15-207MR Dixon Advisory Group pays an infringement notice for potentially misleading advertising

Dixon Advisory Group Limited has complied with two ASIC infringement notices, paying two $10,200 penalties after including potentially misleading claims on its website.

Dixon Advisory's website included a page on the benefits of self-managed super funds (SMSFs). This page compared the costs and performance of SMSFs to industry and retail superannuation funds.

Dixon Advisory's website also included a promotional video which made claims in relation to an independent review of the superannuation system. The video was posted on some of Dixon Advisory’s social media pages.

ASIC was concerned that the web page and video inaccurately represented the costs and performance of SMSFs compared to industry and retail superannuation funds.

'ASIC is determined that all consumers including those considering a self-managed approach to their super get accurate information, and are not misled by any form of advertising, including online and through social media.' ASIC Deputy Chair Peter Kell said.

'Any comparisons between SMSFs and industry and retail funds, particularly regarding performance or fees, must be accurate and have a reasonable basis. Any qualification should be apparent to a consumer when they first see the information.'

Dixon Advisory has removed the statements and video from its website and related social media profiles, and has fully cooperated in responding to ASIC's concerns.


The payment of an infringement notice is not an admission of a contravention of the ASIC Act consumer protection provisions. ASIC can issue an infringement notice where it has reasonable grounds to believe a person has contravened certain consumer protection laws.

In 2012, in response to the growth in SMSFs ASIC established an SMSF Taskforce. The advertising to SMSF trustees or potential trustees through social media has been a recent specific focus of the Taskforce.

Publically available information may be read, and acted on, by a wide range of consumers with a variety of personal circumstances. Content that recommends a strategy, which requires a particular set of personal circumstances for it to be relevant, may be better suited to a personal advice situation.

ASIC encourages all SMSF trustees to look at the information available on the MoneySmart website and provided by the Australian Tax Office.

Read the infringement notice here.

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Last updated: 23/03/2016 03:08