Gareth Morgan attacks financial advisors, other fund managers and regulators in new book
18th Jun 09, 9:37am
Economist and fund manager Gareth Morgan is releasing a book in which he 'names and shames' the people behind finance company collapses and attacks financial advisers, other fund managers and regulators for letting down regular investors. After the panic: Surviving bad investments and bad advice is a sequel to his 2007 book Pension Panic and is available from Friday June 19. It includes information gathered by Interest.co.nz about finance companies. Here is a link to a video interview Gareth Morgan did to promote the book on TVNZ's CloseUp programme. "It's a disgrace what's happened. Look at all of the finance companies and money that's gone down the tubes in the last couple of years," Morgan said in a release promoting the book. "We need this book so we can figure out how to move forward. Although there's been a lot of stuff swirling about in the media with names being mentioned here and there I suspect people were so overwhelmed with the unrelenting bad news that they ended up switching off - almost desensitised or so worn down by it all that they've disengaged. And this is dangerous," Morgan said. "If we're to learn anything out of this mess it is that people can't disengage. It's time now to take a breath and say: "˜Okay. So what can we do to stop this from ever happening again," he said. "People need to be far more informed and ask a lot more questions. Investing is always going to be a risk but it needs to be a considered one, not one based on a pack of lies and half truths. People can't just sit back and rely on others to make good choices for them. Unfortunately, trust in the industry has long gone out the window and we can't rely on people to do the right thing anymore. There are a lot of sharks out there and they're already circling again." "Hopefully I provide people with everything they need to better equip themselves if they're going to play the money game. It needs to be a level playing field and my book provides them with a pretty good place to start." Morgan said the financial crisis and economic downturn exposed an epidemic of behaviour from members of the financial sector that was against the public interest. "We've seen some blimmin shonky activity going on. But it's not just shonky. The whole sector to me has got this high level of incompetence," he said. "Then there are the individuals. I couldn't put this book out without mentioning names. These people have been pretty much invisible, hiding behind limited liability companies. They can simply shut up shop and open for business the next day. That's fine if the system allows it but the public needs to keep track of these operators for when they resurface." "We need a public record and here you have it. The names are already out there but I wanted this book to be a one-stop-shop to make it as easy as possible for the mum-and-dad investors and generations to come to never again go through what we have. It's been a very, very, very painful lesson which will be felt for generations to come." Your views and insights? We welcome comments and any further insights on this article and its source documents in the comments field below. We practice a form of collaborative journalism that aims to include the insights and expertise of our readers to improve our articles. That includes clearly identifying any errors and correcting them. We also update articles with relevant new information and commentary and will label our articles Update 2 etc. We know we don't know everything and we know we're not always right. We appreciate your help in constantly improving and deepening the knowledge and debate on interest.co.nz.