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NEWS

Read our latest news below.

October 2023

FMA ISSUES FIRST FINANCIAL INSTITUTION LICENCE TO GOLD BAND FINANCE

Christchurch based Non-Bank Deposit Taker (NBDT) Gold Band Finance Limited (GBF) is the first financial institution in New Zealand to be issued with a Financial Institution Licence by the country’s financial markets regulator, the Financial Markets Authority (FMA).

The licence requires all registered banks, licensed non-bank deposit takers and licensed insurers to treat consumers fairly when providing relevant products and services. All institutions must have the licence in place by 31 March 2025. The licence was established following the joint FMA and Reserve Bank of New Zealand review into the conduct and culture of banks operating in New Zealand in 2018. The review found that banks and insurers were not creating systems and processes to ensure consumers were treated fairly.

GBF CEO Martin Brennan says that being the first bank, insurer or NBDT in New Zealand to be issued this Licence is a significant achievement for GBF.

“Achieving the licence also demonstrates the importance of – and GBF’s commitment to – having a documented and fit-for-purpose fair conduct compliance programme,” says Martin Brennan.

“GBF’s fair conduct programme will document already existing values and behaviours our people – based throughout the country – have to measure, monitor, and control how we develop, offer, and deliver products and services that are fair for all our customers – borrowers and investors alike”.

Mr Brennan said he believed that being granted this licence, in addition to having the GBF Credit Rating confirmed by Equifax at B+ positive the same week the licence was granted, will cement GBF’s reputation as one of New Zealand’s leading NBDTs.

NEW SENIOR FINANCE SECTOR APPOINTMENTS AT GOLD BAND FINANCE

Following approval by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Gold Band Finance (GBF) has announced several senior industry appointments to its board, as well as an expansion of its South Island team, as part of the next stage of its development.

GBF has made three new director appointments, including Professor David Tripe, Stephen Tubbs and Mark Paget. With a head office in Christchurch, the New Zealand owned and operated organisation is nearing forty years in the local market.

GBF Chair, Paul Rogers, welcomed the election of the three new directors, noting the mix of academic, business and practical experience the new directors bring to the board.

“These appointments are part of the ongoing moves by GBF to strengthen and grow the business on the back on its recently upgraded credit rating, increased profit and growth in reserves to fund expansion.”

Dr David Tripe is currently Professor of Banking at Massey University, where he has been a specialist in banking, economics and finance – including corporate governance, for almost quarter of a century. Dr Tripe also had 17 years of banking experience prior to moving to Massey in 1994.

Stephen Tubbs is executive director of Tubbs & Co, an advisory and governance consultancy firm, which he established after leaving BDO as a partner in 2016. A qualified Chartered Accountant, Stephen has been in public practice for over two decades, and in 2007 was admitted as a Fellow of the New Zealand Institute of Accountants.

Director of Paget & Associates, Mark Paget is a qualified Chartered Accountant who has extensive experience in assisting and advising a broad range of businesses in the SME sector.

Paul Rogers says the breadth of experience on the GBF board complements the focus of the business on serving the growing needs of people across the South Island.

“With our emphasis on providing prudent, competitive investments and tailor-made financial support for local people, GBF has been very pleased to be able to reinforce our presence across the Mainland with an expert team who understand the needs of the community,” says Paul Rogers.

“We believe having people on the ground, who know the area and understand the unique demands of the local economy can make a real difference when choosing the right investment or financial product.”

As part of that expansion policy, GBF has recently appointed Dave Sanders to the role of manager, West Coast and Sean Trengrove to head the GBF team in the Nelson and Blenheim regions.

Dave Sanders is a business and equipment finance specialist. Based in Karamea, Dave has more than 40 years’ experience in the finance sector and has contributed to a broad range of community groups and sector associations.

Since retiring as Brigadier after 40 years in the NZDF, Sean Trengrove has had a wide range of business leadership experience, focused on business improvement, strategic development and market expansion. Based in Nelson, Sean is active in the local community, including as director of YMCA Nelson.

GBF is licenced as a non-bank deposit taker by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand. GBF is a member of the Financial Services Federation Inc. and has incorporated the Responsible Borrowing Guidelines developed by this organisation into its day-to-day operations.

FMA warns New Zealanders of comparison website harvesting investor details

The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) – Te Mana Tātai Hokohoko – is urging New Zealanders to exercise extreme caution when dealing with a phony interest rates comparison website. The FMA believes the website is harvesting users’ personal information for criminals to sell fake investments.

The website “Compare Fixed Term Deposits (CFTD)” claims to offer consumers a way to compare all registered and regulated fixed income investments in New Zealand and find the highest rates.

The website does not contain any comparison information, rather it asks users to fill out a form with their personal details so a third party can contact them.

The FMA has seen an increase in the number of investment scam victims reporting that they entered personal details into comparison websites such as CFTD and have then been contacted by individuals purporting to be from well-known banking institutions such as Citibank or HSBC. Some victims have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars to these schemes.

CFTD’s website indicates it is based in Australia, as it refers to Australian standards and regulations. It states in its terms that it is permitted to provide factual information that is sourced from external credit providers. However, both the Australian and New Zealand Companies Offices and financial regulators have found no record of CFTD.

FMA Response and Enforcement Executive Director Paul Gregory said: “We believe this website is a front used to harvest personal information from New Zealanders for criminals to exploit.

“The FMA strongly encourages New Zealanders to only deal with locally-registered entities and if someone is pushing you into an investment opportunity, step back and ask yourself: why am I being offered this over the phone? Is this legitimate? Don’t be rushed, be sceptical and ask lots of questions. Hit the pause button before sending or committing any of your money to people you cannot truly verify. Most often with scams like these, your money is transferred overseas and it is incredibly difficult for New Zealand authorities to get back.”

The FMA encourages people to come forward with any similar experience. The FMA understands it’s difficult to share these stories but it will make a difference.

From January to June 2023, the FMA has received 154 complaints about investment scams and fraud and issued 40 public warnings about scams and other non-compliant entities.

Comparison sites are often presented in search results when people are searching for investment opportunities. Phony sites will often be presented alongside legitimate comparison sites and appear because they are paid for, ‘sponsored’ links, rather than genuine search results.

Red flags to watch for and ways to avoid being scammed include:

  • Check the site you’re using is genuine. Make sure the company is based here, has a New Zealand phone number and the website url matches the company.
  • Legitimate comparison sites such as Sorted.org.nz will usually link you to the companies offering the investments, not capture and pass on your details to someone claiming to be an ‘adviser’ or ‘broker’.
  • Check very carefully before sending any money or personal information to an investment opportunity, even if you think you’re investing with a legitimate or well-known financial institution. Do not trust links, emails or contact details supplied by callers. Check for yourself with the institution.
  • Banks and fund managers are licensed and regulated and do not generally call you out of the blue, offering a new opportunity that demands you immediately send them money.
  • Pay attention, listen to your bank if it raises questions or concerns about your payment requests or money transfers – they may have seen other customers lose money responding to the same opportunity. Check with a trusted adviser, friend or family member – often all it takes is a fresh set of eyes to raise red flags you may not have considered.

View the Compare Fixed Term Deposits (CFTD) warning

More information on how New Zealanders can protect themselves against investment scams, report a suspected scam, and a list of our public warnings can be found on the FMA website.

In memoriam: Gold Band Chairman Robin Standage

It is with considerable sadness that Gold Band Finance acknowledges the death of GBF Chairman Robin Standage. Robin passed away over Waitangi Weekend 2023.

Robin was a director of GBF for almost four decades. His contribution and commitment to the organisation was unparalleled.

Robin was a stalwart of the local legal community, and deeply involved in business throughout the region. With considerable expertise in commercial and finance law, Robin’s experience was in demand both as a director and legal advisor for a number of high-profile local businesses.

Robin will be greatly missed by the team at GBF. We would also like to extend our sincere condolences to Robin’s family and friends.

RobinStandage

GOLD BAND APPOINTS WEST COAST MANAGER

Gold Band Finance (GBF) has announced the appointment of finance sector specialist Dave Sanders as its new West Coast manager, dedicated to helping local people with a broad range of financial solutions and term deposit options.

The company announced the news with a special ‘West Coast rate’, adding 0.50% to its leading interest rates for West Coast investors until the end of December 2022.

With more than 40 years in the finance sector, working for major trading banks and finance companies, Dave relocated to a lifestyle property in Karamea in 2018.

A proud ‘Coaster’, Dave is active in the community. A keen follower of the game, he has been a rugby referee for more than two decades and was recently appointed Chair of the Buller Rugby Referees Association (Inc).

Dave says he was excited to take on the new role as a way of supporting his local community.

“I think there is a real opportunity to help Coasters from across the region, people looking for new or additional finance options for their home or business, or just a more competitive interest rate on their investment,” says Dave.

“I’m particularly interested in putting some of my experience in industries that are key to the local economy – such as manufacturing and engineering, road transport and automotive, and civil contracting – to work in helping to deliver new financing solutions for local businesses.”

In over three decades as an industry specialist, Dave has contributed to a broad range of sectors and trade associations, sitting on the executive committees for Road Transport NZ, Civil Contractors and the Bus and Coach Association.

GBF chief executive Martin Brennan says Dave’s appointment underscores the company’s focus on providing tailored services to local people.

“Over many years, we’ve seen a pattern of larger organisations reducing financial services to the regions,” says Martin.

“As a financial services company that has been part of the Mainland for 35 years, we believe there’s no substitute for the level of understanding and support you can bring from providing personal service at the local level.”

“That’s why we’re excited to not only have Dave’s level of financial knowledge and industry expertise, but also his presence on the ground to help work alongside Coasters to understand their evolving needs and provide tailored services to help them.”

Dave will travel regularly through the Coast, meeting face to face to assist local people in Westport, Reefton, Greymouth and Hokitika.

To get in touch, contact Dave at: dave@gbf.co.nz.

Photo of Dave Sanders (new West Coast manager)

Client Roger Hall fulfilled a life dream when he got to the Mount Everest Base last month.

Keeping his head warm was his Gold Band Finance Beanie. How’s that for product placement?

Roger Hall at Mount Everest Base last month

Time for another look at non-bank deposit takers

Goldband chief executive Martin Brennan says it is time investors and advisers took a new look at non-bank deposit takers.

Read more…

Update for Investors

Dear Investor

Please find enclosed your latest investment statement to 30th June 2022. Thank you for your continued support.

In this letter I wanted to share with you a story about a meeting I had with an investment advisor late last year.

I was there to promote our investment offerings. Truth be told I didn’t get very far. He thought investments in Gold Band were “boring.” He showed me all his apps where he could view his shares, his bitcoin and other, “less boring” investments. I held my tongue, wished him well and went on my way.

I’ve thought about that meeting a great deal since then. In all honesty, I was initially a bit upset but as I’ve watched share markets fall, bitcoin investments absolutely crash, property investment schemes stall, something has dawned on me.

Boring is good!

If boring means our investors, opening their statements in this letter (sorry, no app), and see their capital is still there – all of it;

If boring means they have been paid a fair market rate on their investment and, if capitalized, the investment has gone up while the not so boring ones have gone down, a lot;

If boring is never, in over 35 years of trading, failed to repay investments on maturity or make interest payments;

If boring is Gold Band continuing to maintain its requirements as imposed by no less an organization than The Reserve Bank of New Zealand;

Then boring is good and I proudly admit it, we are boring!

I wonder how that investment advisor is going, reading his updates on his apps? I wonder how his clients are feeling about how ‘exciting’ their investments are now?

Now, on the subject of boring investments.

You will no doubt be observing the changes happening in various finance markets. I have been asked on occasions what link there is between the Reserve Bank’s Official Cash Rate (OCR) and our investment rates on offer.

Well, the short answer is, there is none.

The RBNZ describes the OCR as follows:

“The OCR is the wholesale rate for borrowing money. Most registered banks hold settlement accounts with us, which they use for inter-bank transactions. For example, if you make an EFTPOS payment, the money is paid by your bank to the bank of the recipient from these settlement accounts. We pay interest on settlement account balances and charge interest on overnight borrowing, at rates linked to the OCR. We set no limit on the amount of cash we will borrow or lend at these rates.” (RBNZ website)

Simply put, the RBNZ does not lend to Gold Band Finance and the OCR is essentially a short-term facility for banks.

Notwithstanding this, as banks move their retail deposits up, for which we do compete, then clearly that leads to the likes of Gold Band increasing deposit rates to reflect this and, to be honest, stay competitive.

As I have mentioned in previous updates, we seek to balance expectations between investors and borrowers alike. High deposit rates in my experience lead to higher lending rates with increased credit risk, something that is not in an investor’s best interest (if you will excuse the pun.)

I’m not an economist but my instinct is the increase in deposits rates we made in March will not be the last one this year.

Thank you for your ongoing support. Always happy to hear from you and if you know of anyone looking for boring investments, you know where to send them.

Yours faithfully
Martin Brennan
Chief Executive
(03) 963 0722
martin@goldbandfinance.co.nz

Please note the opinions expressed in this letter are mine and not necessarily those of Gold Band Finance Limited.

Gold Band is proud to sponsor the Fallen Heroes Trust

For several years, Gold Band Finance has been a principal sponsor of the New Zealand Fallen Heroes Trust.

The Trust aims to fund projects that make a real difference in the lives of our Fallen Heroes and their families. If a member of our armed services is wounded or injured while on military service the impact on their future and that of their immediate family can be significant. While service personnel can access the health and social services available to all New Zealanders, the Trust believes their sacrifice on behalf of all New Zealand deserves to be recognised with the additional support they can provide.

The Trust also aims to make a difference for the family left behind if their loved one is tragically killed while on active duty, by helping them lead full lives and achieve their aspirations, despite their loss. The Trust’s contribution is tailored to meet the unique needs of the individuals and their families.

Although we acknowledge the sacrifice of New Zealand’s service men and women year-round, each year in association with ANZAC Day, we promote the work of Fallen Heroes and join with them in remembrance of the courage, commitment and sacrifice of those who have served, and those who serve today.

To discuss your lending or investment requirements, please contact us on 0800 55 3000 or 03 961 3000

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Download our Application Form, complete and email to us at: info@goldbandfinance.co.nz