Continued from page 1
Most people do not think about where their money is being invested, when they pay into a mortgage, pension or savings account, they just think about return they will get on their money. This does appear to be changing however.
Following consultation with its members, Co-operative Insurance Society (http://www.cis.co.uk/ ), which has more than £20 billion of funds under management, has become first insurer to launch an ethical engagement policy and said it would lobby businesses at every opportunity to improve their ethical performances. The Co-op already tries to ensure ethical compliance by making new business customers fill out an Ethical Policies questionnaire, which is assessed by bank before agreeing to provide business services. Financial comparison sites such as Moneynet are now releasing guides providing information on ethical investment (http://www.moneynet.co.uk/ethical-investing-guide/index.shtml ) covering all aspects of personal finance from bank accounts, investments and pensions to choices of domestic energy providers. Other organisations such as Ethical Investment Research Service (http://www.eiris.org/ ) have been set up to provide information into companies' ethical behaviour for independent investors, fund managers and charities alike.
The world is gradually waking up to idea that responsibility needs to be taken for our actions, whether those actions are at global, national or individual level. Lobbying of politicians and interest that has been engendered by Live 8, and MPH campaigns can help to make a change, but these need to be continued beyond present media furore if we are to make a real change. An ethically responsible nation is only possible if we also make changes on our own doorstep. Until we really get our personal finance into perspective, MPH becomes just another fashion label.
Released by http://www.bigmouthmedia.com
Richard works in Edinburgh for Bigmouthmedia ( http://www.bigmouthmedia.com ), occasionally writing for the personal finance blog Cashzilla ( http://cashzilla.blogspot.com/ ), and drinking too much coffee.