Former HSBC Planner Handed Permanent Ban

HSBC Australia

HSBC Australia

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission has permanently banned a former Perth-based financial planner from the financial services industry.

An investigation by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) found that between April 2013 to December 2013, Tak Simson Kwok engaged in not only misleading and deceptive but also dishonest conduct in relation to client funds and investments.

Kwok was employed as a financial planner by HSBC Bank Australia (HSBC) from 29 September 2009 to 16 December 2013. His responsibilities included providing financial advice to HSBC customers in respect of investments in HSBC-approved products (HSBC AP).

The ASIC investigation found that Kwok misled and deceived four individual clients into investing a total of $1,975,000 that they falsely believed had been placed into a HSBC AP.

Mislead and Deceived

He also misled and deceived a further two individual clients into investing or reinvesting a total of $2,295,000 into what the clients falsely believed was a HSBC AP Annuity investment and engaged in conduct that was dishonest, including forging documents and signatures to disguise the fact that client money had not been invested into a HSBC AP.

Furthermore, he misled and deceived HSBC into erroneously believing he was only providing recommendations to the clients about products on the HSBC AP list and in accordance with HSBC policies.

Removing Dishonest Operators

Kwok is the 51st individual to be banned by ASIC from providing financial services since 1 July 2015, of which 26 have been permanently banned.

John Price, ASIC Commissioner, said, «ASIC will act to remove those financial advisers from the industry who engage in dishonest conduct.» Kwok has the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of ASIC's decision.

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