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How ethical is your KiwiSaver investment?

Are you “saving for your future” or are you “saving the future for you”?

In 2016, KiwiSaver funds stopped investing in nuclear weapons and cluster bombs. This is a great step in the right direction, but it got us thinking about the other types of shares our funds invest in. It seems like the two approaches are to either: 

1. Not invest in bad stuff (negative screen) or
2. Proactively invest in good stuff (positive screen)

Most funds in NZ screen out cluster munitions, anti-personnel mines, chemical weapons, nuclear weapons, whaling and the manufacture of tobacco. However, there may be incidental revenue from companies from these activities – i.e. Boeing manufactures planes, but a small portion of their business is in military aircraft.

What about...

Gambling, genetically modified organisms (GMO), palm oil, fossil fuels, the list goes on. Did you know that investments in the aforementioned industries can vary from 2.5% to as high as 15%? 

Let’s look at Growth funds. Growth funds invest in more shares than other funds such as Conservative and Balanced funds hence they have a higher likelihood of investing in unethical shares.

FUNDS*%
Generate Growth2.47
Booster SRI Growth 6.00
Fisher Growth 6.17
Simplicity Growth8.00
Westpac Growth8.00
Milford Active Growth9.59
ASB Growth12.23
ANZ Growth13.00
BNZ Growth       13.92
AMP Growth     14.00
KiwiWealth Growth 15.00


Percentage of shares that invest in:

Fossil fuels, weapons, gambling, alcohol, GMOs, palm oil, human rights injustice, and companies that do animal testing.

Have you ever wondered if your investments take sustainability into account? Would you like to factor social responsibility into your investments? If you wish to take a closer look at where your KiwiSaver money is going, let me know. I'm here to help.

By Stephen France - KiwiSaver Specialist

*statistics from Mindful Money



 

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