AMP's Australian chair has resigned as the company continues to grapple with fall-out from admitting it charged fees for no advice during Australia's Royal Commission into misconduct in the financial services sector.
In a statement this morning, AMP, which is also a major player in the New Zealand market, said its chair Catherine Brenner had stepped down from the board.
Brenner's move follows the early departure of chief executive Craig Meller 10 days ago and an apology from the company over poor conduct.
Mike Wilkins, who took over as the interim chief executive when Meller resigned will also be the interim chair.
Brenner said she was honoured to have been the chair of AMP but was deeply disappointed by the current issues.
"I am deeply disappointed by the issues at hand and am particularly concerned for the impact they have had on our customers, employees, advisers and shareholders.
"As Chairman, I am accountable for governance. I have always sought to act in the best interests of the company and have been in discussions with the Board about the most appropriate course of action, including my resignation.
"The Board has now accepted my resignation as chairman as a step towards restoring the trust and confidence in AMP."
AMP's share price has plummeted in the wake of the inquiry which heard the company made a deliberate decision to continue charging fees to a group of "orphan" clients for three months when they went into a central pool, despite them receiving no advice services and legal advice that it was unlawful.
The issue arose when AMP acted as a buyer of last resort, buying an adviser's client book if they were unable to sell it to another authorised AMP representative.
In some cases, system errors were to blame but the inquiry heard AMP did not tell ASIC about the deliberate decision to keep charging the fees.
AMP has refunded A$4.7 million (NZ$5 million) in fees to date to 15,712 customers affected.
The company said it had completed a review and the fee for no services practices ceased in November 2016.