Put Responsible Investment into action

It’s a small step from Fair Trade coffee to Responsible Investment 

If you find yourself talking about environmental, social and ethical issues that you are passionate about, why not invest your money in line with these causes as well? Responsible Investment offers a tangible and powerful way to translate words into action – the time is perfect for you to put your ‘Money Where Your Mouth Is’.

You may already be actively involved in social or environmental causes. Perhaps you work as a volunteer, belong to a special interest group or make donations to a particular cause. Responsible Investment gives you a way to take this activism one step further.

How you spend

You’re probably already aware that you can be an “activist” by the choices you make as a consumer. You make choices on a daily basis about what groceries you buy, the energy you use, or the car you drive. These choices are examples of ways you can use your money to support or withhold support for different companies.

How you save and invest

Responsible investment gives you the opportunity to make similar choices with your savings, KiwiSaver and investments. You can open a savings account with a socially responsible bank or building society. You can choose to put your KiwiSaver in a Responsible Investment option. When it comes time to plan your investments you can consult a specialist financial adviser such as Jonathan Neal at Rise Financial and invest through our specialist Responsible Investment managed funds portfolios.

Shareholder activism

Direct investment through the share market gives you even more potential to influence the behaviour of companies. This is called shareholder activism. Large institutional investors, including specialist RI fund managers already have excellent track records for actively engaging companies they invest in to alter corporate behaviour.

Responsible Investment fund managers from Australasia and across the world have collaborated on common issues. They have successfully engaged with the companies in which they invest to seek improvements on environmental, social or governance issues.

For example, several large super funds from around the world have targeted US car manufacturers. Their aim has been to raise awareness that those manufacturers have been purchasing steel from Brazilian mining companies known to be using bonded labour in the hope they can expose and change such practices.

Elements of the information appearing on this page were kindly provided by the Responsible Investment Association of Australasia.