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Retirees and Socially Responsible Investing: Putting Less Stock in Sin

Socially responsible investing encompasses an estimated $3.07 trillion out of $25.2 trillion in the U.S. investment marketplace.

| BY Donald Liebenson

Among Affluent investors, retirees appear to be more strongly invested in and have stronger opinions regarding what constitutes socially responsible investing.

Nearly nine-in-ten (86 percent) of retirees primarily think of socially responsible investing as investing in environmentally-friendly investments or companies, basically the same percentage as Affluent investors overall. But a slightly more 67 percent consider socially responsible investing to be investing in companies that support a social cause, compared with 65 percent of respondents.

Socially responsible investing encompasses an estimated $3.07 trillion out of $25.2 trillion in the U.S. investment marketplace, according to US SIF, the Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment. These types of investments encourage corporations to improve their practices on environmental, social and governance issues.

When Affluent investors consider socially responsible investing, retirees are more adamant about what investments or companies they would not invest in, according to a new Spectrem Group survey. Seventy-two percent defined socially responsible investing as not investing in companies that manufacture their products in countries that are guilty of human rights violations.
The remaining responses were focused on the so-called “sin stocks” and the kinds of companies whose products or practices they would not want to encourage. Sixty-five percent (vs. 60 percent of overall respondents) would not invest in companies or investments that manufacture or promote tobacco, while nearly two-thirds (64 percent) would consider it an investment deal breaker if a company manufactured or promoted pornography, compared with 58 percent of Affluent respondents.

A near-equal percentage (40 percent, respectively) believe that socially responsible investing means not investing in companies or investments that sponsor or promote gambling or alcohol.

Retirees, though, are more likely than Affluent investors overall to believe that not investing in companies that manufacture or promote personal use weapons, such as guns (47 percent vs. 43 percent) constitutes socially responsible investing.



About the Author


Donald Liebenson

dliebenson@millionairecorner.com

Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.  

A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment. 

 


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