KiwiSaver: $4.1 billion still invested in unethical entities


Although there is an improving trend in ethical investment, $4.1 billion of KiwiSaver funds is still invested in companies that the public wants to avoid and $2.3 billion of retail investment funds.

This is one of the findings revealed in the most recent annual surveys undertaken jointly by Mindful Money and the Responsible Investment Association of Australasia.

Mindful Money is a charity promoting ethical investing.

Its most recent report, Inside the Black Box of New Zealand Investment Funds was released last week.

The report shows the amount invested in each of the ten categories that the public wants to avoid and the trends over one year for the KiwiSaver fund and six months for retail investment funds.

The public has been clear in annual surveys that they do not want to invest in sectors like weapons, gambling and fossil fuels or in companies that violate human rights or test products on animals.

Barry Coates, founder and CEO of Mindful Money, commented: “There has been progress in responsible investing.

This reflects the international revolution towards investing responsibly and shows the benefits of transparency.”

However,  “…the major investment funds are still failing to reduce the harm from their investment,” said Coates.

Despite the declines, there are still large amounts invested in Animal Welfare abuses ($2.2bn), Fossil Fuels ($1.6bn) and Human Rights violations ($1.2bn).

“It makes no sense that some funds are actually increasing their investment in fossil fuels when data shows that the US Oil and Gas index has dropped by 63% over the past five years,” Coates said.

They are ignoring the facts and the frequent warnings of financial risks to fossil fuel companies.

126 KiwiSaver funds have investments in Exxon-Mobil, a company that has spent hundreds of millions on funding climate deniers.”


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News category: New Zealand.

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