The corporate watchdog is looking to tighten the leash on Australian ‘finfluencers’ who create content that the regulator thinks looks too much like actual financial advice.
As Gen Z and millennials increasingly turn to social media for information about personal finances and investing, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has said it is “actively on the lookout” for social media creators who say more than they’re legally qualified to.
“ASIC is actively on the lookout for examples of unlicensed financial advice on social media, YouTube and other online channels, and we encourage people to report examples of recurrent behaviour to us,” ASIC told News Corp.
“Under the Corporations Act, significant penalties apply for individuals or companies that carry on a financial services business without an Australian financial services licence.”
And the price is high for anyone found providing financial advice without a license: the penalty can be as high as $133,200, and/or as much as five years in jail.
But who are these ‘finfluencers’? And what kind of content are they putting out online? Yahoo Finance takes a look at Australia’s top social media content creators in the finance and investing space.
23-year-old Tash lists her net worth at above $190,000 and has made headlines for buying her first apartment at 22 years old.
On top of working as a disability support worker and studying occupational therapy, Tash is on a mission to “make financial conversations less taboo”.
18.7k Instagram followers
60.6k TikTok followers
17.7k YouTube subscribers
Sydney-based is a 25-year-old former marketing manager who two months ago quit her job to run her YouTube channel full-time. She has several social media profiles centred around explaining basic investing and personal finance concepts.
Tan also shares a breakdown of her net wealth, encourages people to invest early, and also shares lifestyle tips such as how to budget while travelling.
“I want to prove that you don't have to be rich, [or] a genius to start investing and getting yourself into a good financial situation,” Tan states on her YouTube.
Aleks, who goes by @brokegirlwealth, is a 26-year-old lawyer by day who shares her journey “from broke” to nearly $390,000 in investments.
As well as explaining concepts like ETFs and cryptocurrency, Aleks also focuses on helping people develop the right mindset towards money by exposing her own stumbling blocks or assuring followers that “you are not your money”.
28k TikTok followers
Originally from France, Sydney-based Tiktoker Meddy Demars describes himself as “making money and investing in it” in his TikTok bio, and creates videos on investing as well as cryptocurrencies.
Demars also explains how economic factors like inflation affects savings, shares his favourite stocks, and explains how to buy crypto, tailored to an Australian audience.
YouTuber Justin Baldori creates videos about investing in the stock market, but also has a special focus on cryptocurrency.
On his TikTok channel, Baldori also explores the benefits of different finance apps as well as explaining his thoughts on the ‘best platform for absolute beginners’, advising people to take their time to do research.
Many of these ‘finfluencers’, including Queenie Tan, @tashinvests, and @brokegirlwealth will be speaking at this Friday, a live-streamed virtual conference of financial influencers as well as ASX-listed companies.
An ASIC representative is scheduled to speak at the event, and is expected to explain the rules around financial advice on social media.
Yahoo Finance has reached out to ASIC for comment.