Five hundred and seventy-nine financial advisers sat the inaugural FASEA Financial Advisers Exam held in nine centres across Australia in June with more than 90 per cent of the candidates achieving a pass grade.

Those who failed the exam will receive guidance on which knowledge areas they need to improve to give themselves the best chance to pass at a future sitting, according to Stephen Glenfield, the chief executive of the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority.

“FASEA is pleased with the implementation of the first exam and congratulates successful candidates on completing an important component of their education requirements under the Corporations Act,” Glenfield said in a statement.

Glenfield first told delegates at Professional Planner’s Licensee Summit in the Blue Mountains at the start of June that around 600 advisers had registered for the first landmark exam. At the time Glenfield described the significance of the exam to the advice industry as “major”, given that advisers who have not undertaken and passed the exam by the end of 2020 will be removed from ASIC’s adviser register.

Registrations are open for 2019 exam sittings for September in 15 locations and for December in 18 locations. More than 1000 have currently enrolled, FASEA has confirmed.

Following its September and December sittings, FASEA is offering its exam bi- monthly in 2020 across metropolitan and regional centres, in Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin and Hobart.

The Corporations Act requires advisers to pass an exam approved by the standards setting body before 1 January 2021; new entrants are required to pass the exam before becoming a Provisional Relevant Provider.

The exam tests three domains of knowledge and skill: financial advice regulatory and legal obligations; applied ethical and professional reasoning and communication and financial advice construction.