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Why choose socially responsible investments?
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Ethical & socially responsible investing | Old Mutual Wealth
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Socially responsible investment (SRI)
Back John Devilee Refrigeration Overview. An area of the economy where businesses share the same or a related product or service, for example, pharmaceuticals, telecommunications or retail. Usually with a broader remit than 'dark green' funds, these often take a 'best of sectors' approach. These include funds that invest in companies specifically because of the positive contribution they make to the environment. Recycling companies or those involved in renewable energies such as solar or wind power come into this category.
These are examples of positive screening. In reality, most ethical funds — including 'dark green' ones — also invest in such companies. There is no screening involved in these funds, instead they focus on using their influence as shareholders to challenge companies about their environmental or social performance. In practical terms, this means entering into a dialogue with companies to improve their environmental or social policies and to promote industry 'best practice' along with a continuous improvement in the way they run their businesses.
It is widely accepted that swift action needs to be taken on potential implications of climatic change. Companies are under ever mounting pressure to act. National or multinational policy directives, non-governmental pressure groups and, increasingly, individuals are expressing their preference for those companies or products which have a less detrimental environmental impact.
Socially responsible investing in Australia
Many leading companies are now considering it best business sense to actively address climate change. Many green and ethical investment funds adopt this approach, as well as seeking to influence corporate behaviour and the regulatory framework in such a way as to harness the market to achieve the best environmental outcome for society. Some ethical funds will target specific sectors and companies for engagementEngagementAn ethical investment fund may follow an 'engagement policy' by using the influence of shareholders to challenge companies about their environmental or social performance.
This means entering into a dialogue with companies to improve their environmental or social policies and to promote industry 'best practice'. Many investment experts firmly believe that better environmental practices will ultimately mean improved corporate performance — which is good news for investors.
As an example, some ethical and environmental funds will look to identify and take advantage of investment opportunities in areas such as alternative energy which offer solutions to identifiable problems such as the world's over-reliance on fossil fuels. It is based on Old Mutual International's interpretation of the relevant law and is correct at the date shown on the title page. While we believe this interpretation to be correct, we cannot guarantee it. Old Mutual International cannot accept any responsibility for any action taken or refrained from being taken as a result of the information contained in this article.
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