You may have heard some murmurs about socially responsible investing recently.
Given 2016 was the hottest year on record, Australia claiming the highest the gambling rate in the world and the recent scandals about labour standards, it’s fair to ask yourself:
“Are the companies I invest in helping the world?”
Enter socially responsible investing (SRI)
Known as ethical investing, sustainable investing or green investing, socially responsible investing is an investment strategy that considers both financial return and social good to bring about social change.
Its history is believed to date back to the Quaker Society in the late 18th Century when members were banned from participating in the slave trade. Seems fair enough today. Back then, it was a bold statement.
Fast forward a few hundred years we saw people question the ethics of companies during the Vietnam War. Dow Chemical, a napalm producer, was boycotted and the subject of protests across America for its war profiteering when a photo was released of a nine-year-old girl running naked and screaming with her back on fire from the napalm dropped on her village.
Recently fast fashion brands like H&M and Zara are under scrutiny for labour rights violations, some ethical funds have stopped investing in these brands.
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