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Barriers to Ethical Investing

Greenwashing involves labelling a product (whether it is something you eat or use around your home, or an investment of KiwiSaver fund) to be 'green', 'ethical', sustainable or responsible, when it really isn't when you look under the hood.

To work out whether your KiwiSaver or investment actually is true to label would require looking at the actual investments held and undertaking a thorough analysis of the policies and processes that each fund manager uses. The independent information available from traditional research houses is not that thorough yet, and it is easy to find inconsistencies.

Fortunately in New Zealand, we have the Mindful Money charity which analyses New Zealand offerings to show what their holdings are and whether there are any 'nasties' held in the portfolio.  Sometimes there are really good reasons for holding those 'nasties' - in particular if the fund manager is 'Actively Engaging' with the fund manager to get change in relation to that issue.  However, Active Engagement only works if the fund manager has genuine power to achieve change and influence the company.

Moneyworks like the work that Mindful Money is doing so much that we have contracted them to undertake their analysis on all the funds that we recommend (or are thinking we might recommend) to our clients.  Having that source data, we have been able to build a unique and proprietary Ethical Investment Analysis system that means that our clients can know how true to label their funds are and if there are 'nasties', how material that exposure is - it might be a few dollars, and why the fund managers are holding those companies.

The analysis is robust and independent and accessible to Moneyworks clients.  Find out more about it on our website here.



 

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