Only 50% of Brits care about investing ethically

| November 21, 2009
Only 50% of Brits care about investing ethically

Only half of Brits would be interested in finding out the ethical credentials of the next financial product they purchase, new research has discovered.

The EIRIS (Experts in Responsible Investment Solutions)-commissioned poll found that just 44% of the British public are curious to know whether or not their money is being invested ethically.

Of these, a quarter would discard the information and invest in the product offering the best returns, regardless of ethics.

Six in ten (62%) of those polled could not name or describe in detail any ethical banking products or services.

Almost half (46%) said there is not enough information available on how savings and investments can be used to make a visible difference in the world.

Two-in-three (67%) believe financial institutions should prioritise protecting human rights when investing money.

Worryingly, this leaves a third of people who don’t care whether or not their investments result in human rights abuses.

Other issues deemed to have priority for ethical investors included fairtrade, protecting the environment, avoiding weapons manufacturers, and tackling climate change.

Mark Roberson, EIRIS communications and development manager, said: “Our survey provides firm evidence of growing interest in ethical finance, suggesting that the message that it is possible to both make money and make a difference when investing ethically is starting to get through to consumers.

“But levels of awareness, trust and confidence in ethical finance are low.

“The industry must respond with greater transparency and provide more information on how saving and investing can make a positive difference.”

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