The report reveals that Australia had 28,000 financial advisers five years ago, but today there are only 16,000. Furthermore, the remaining advisers are charging higher fees, with $3,710 being the new common rate, up 48% in five years. As a result, many people are being priced out of receiving good financial advice.

The report's author, Michelle Levy, argues that Australia has gone too far in trying to make financial advice "perfect" by outlawing commissions and requiring advisers to put clients' interests ahead of their own. This has inadvertently made it more difficult for banks and super funds to offer advice, and has left consumers without access to "good" advice.

Levy suggests that allowing self-interested parties to offer advice is not necessarily a bad thing, as long as the advice also serves the interests of their customers. Good advice does not have to be comprehensive or a lifetime plan, but it should not recommend poorly performing products or options that are not in the customer's best interest.

The government is now considering Levy's proposal, which is more subtle than simply banning self-interested parties from giving advice. If implemented correctly, it could help to increase the availability of good, affordable financial advice in Australia.

In the meantime, Australians facing financial uncertainty should consider their options carefully and do their research before making any major decisions. With interest rates expected to rise even further, it is more important than ever to seek out good financial advice that is tailored to your individual circumstances.