The values survey, which remains on-going, is conducted directly with investors in collaboration with IFAs through www.worldwiseinvestor.com and aims to understand what values investors have today.
The top ethical issues
The top issues to the investors surveyed are:
- the clearing of the tropical rainforests;
- sustainable wood; and
- industrial pollution.
Mark Hoskin, Partner of Holden & Partners: “Whilst these old Quaker issues are still important to many the old issues of vice are not the main issues of today. Consequently the ethical funds launched today don’t focus on these issues and indeed often don’t have any social screens.”
A new style of Ethical funds
Both are managed by ex-employees of Henderson Global Investors (Claudia Quiroz and Tim Dieppe) who run a number of ethically screened funds and while they retain a good knowledge of ethical issues these are not the drivers behind stock selection.
Tim Dieppe, fund manager of the IM WHEB sustainability fund: “The environmental concerns highlighted by investors in this survey are driving significant change in the shape of the future global economy. We believe that companies providing sustainable solutions to social and environmental challenges present a very significant opportunity for long-term investors.”
Responsibility is becoming more important to people
The Worldwise Investor values survey also reveals that 91% believe that climate change will have a significant impact on future generations; 91% believe that fund managers should take sustainability issues seriously and; 91% would like fund managers to consider environmental, social and governance factors in the investment process.
Mark Hoskin: “Climate change and the financial crisis has had an impact on investors. Investors today may be more concerned about the environment and irresponsible marketing rather than simple Quaker principles and exclusions. Today many ethical funds hold companies like Diageo, perhaps one day we will see a tobacco company?”
The values survey on Worldwiseinvestor.com is on-going, open to all and aims to be a part of an IFA’s advice process. It takes approximately ten minutes to complete and currently has 81 responses.