Further reading

Hedge funds and other investors stand to make billions of dollars from their holdings in a bankrupt US mall owner, General Growth Properties

Canberra faces legal challenge on compensation for Australian power operators in relation to a proposed carbon emissions trading scheme

Madoff liquidator seeks fees of $22.1m

Private equity chief in rallying call to defend industry against ‘misguided’ EU regulation

Gartmore confirms plans for IPO

Rising portfolio value bolsters KKR

UK regulator faces pensions dilemma

Paulson starts gold fund amid record prices

Ministers defend new FSA powers

Informant says Galleon tips came from Asia

Worried nations try to cool hot money

Trichet warns on bank bonuses

Electronic rival for convertible bonds planned

Ruth Sullivan

Hand cradles a globe above the cracked earth

Half of UK consumers would like to check the ethical credentials of their next investment

Post credit crunch, most people would expect investors - or would-be ones - to focus on how to gain returns from any financial product, while other considerations such as ethical concerns have headed out of the door.

Not so, it seems. An Ipsos Mori/Eiris consumer survey that dropped into my email box today, showed nearly half of UK consumers are keen to find out about the ethical credentials of their next investment. Given that most of those polled are already investors, they are likely to have some relevant views.

They felt banks and other financial institutions should prioritise concerns such as protecting human rights, investing in fair trade, protecting the environment and tackling climate change. These are now the hot issues rather than the more traditional ones of manufacturing relating to alcohol, tobacco and gambling, says Eiris, the Ethical Investment Research Service.

But there is still a long way to go. Awareness of ethical financial products is low as is trust, with more than a third not believing claims made by financial providers. But only 15 per cent thought ethical products were likely to underperform similar standard products.

They might want to take a look at a report brought out this week by Mercer, the consultant, that lays out volumes of academic research on how taking account of environmental, social and corporate governance issues can have a positive impact on portfolio returns.

One thing is sure. Green, social and ethical funds have grown considerably in number and size in Europe over the past year, in spite of the fall-out from the financial crisis.

The number of retail funds increased over the year to the end of June to 683 from 537, or by 27 per cent, according to Vigeo, a corporate social responsibility ratings agency, and Morningstar.

Guy Hands, head of private equity house Terra Firma, warns US and Europe could suffer ‘Japanese problem’ unless banks’ leveraged loans are restructured

Goldman apologises for role in crisis and pledges $500m to help US small businesses

Mark Lowe, who set up Nomos Capital Partners is being sued for discrimination by a former employee

Doomed to repeat history? asks whether we need to learn from excessive consumer debt or was it an issue of leverage in the financial system

Bankers fear over-regulation

Tankers store oil as futures prices rocket

Lehman seeks $10bn clawback in Barclays suit

Bank regulation but at what cost to the economy?

Myners says ISC code is not strong enough

Invesco Perpetual launches split cap

Body created to lobby for the financial sector

TPG investors can cut exposure to financial fund

Terra Firma writes down EMI value

Property portfolios make gains

Cut tax relief for the wealthy, says TUC

Protesters lash out at Goldman

Archbishop of Canterbury attacks City culture

London’s status in doubt as BlueCrest decides to relocate 50 staff to Geneva

Resolution prepares to make further deals

UK’s oldest private equity group, 3i, edges into postive returns

Ceiops to give annuities reprieve in UK, opening the door to exceptions for existing annuity books

Move to curb EU fund managers’ pay

TPG, the private equity firm, could invest in JAL

Microfinance group in CDO scheme

Former Optimal chief faces Madoff charges

Two former Bear Stearns fund chiefs cleared of fraud

Schroders celebrates two consecutive quarters of institutional net fund inflows

Brussels warns IASB saying rules shake-up could cause instability

Paulson & Co, the New York hedge fund, has disclosed a 2.08 per cent stake in Cadbury

Galleon probe expands to take in tech analysts

Ruth Sullivan

Norway’s Government Pension Fund seems to have it all. Oil wealth, decent returns and a responsible approach to investment.

The decision to put part of its oil wealth to work for the country’s pension pot is one that makes many pension savers in other parts of the world gnash their teeth in envy, particularly if they happen to live in a resource-rich country that has not invested its black gold in the same way, such as the UK. 

Sophia Grene

This is very odd – instead of talking about how the last year has destroyed the efficient markets hypothesis and its friend modern portfolio theory, here’s someone pointing out that they couldn’t have been disproved because Nobody Believed In Them anyway.

It’s not the first time someone has pointed this out, but it is a nice succinct summary. This disposes very usefully of a strawman that has been brilliantly used by both sides to divert attention from the real problem, which is that markets have always been and always will be inefficient and clever greedy people like to capture the economic rent from this fact.

Sophia Grene

are ETFs 'good', 'bad', or 'I dunno'?

In the balance: are ETFs 'good', 'bad' or 'I dunno'

ETFS – are they low cost, simple investment tools for the retail saver (GOOD), or a complicated device for enhancing the profitability of investment banks (BAD), or even a bewildering mix of the two (UH- dunno)? If the recent wave of commentary on the blogosphere has left you feeling confused, here’s a helpful guide from the Aleph blog – The Good ETF.

But remember, according to Tadas Viskanta at Abnormal returns, size really does matter for ETFs.

About the blog

FTfm is no longer updated but it remains open as an archive.

FTfm's specialist writing team offer their insights into the global fund management industry.

About the authors

Pauline Skypala has been editor of FTfm for four years having previously been deputy personal finance editor. She joined the FT in 1999 and has been writing on savings and investment issues throughout her career.

Steve Johnson, FTfm deputy editor, has been a journalist for 17 years, 10 of which have been with the FT.


Sophia Grene, reporter on FTfm, has been a financial journalist in print and online for 12 years.

Ruth Sullivan has worked as a financial/business journalist and foreign correspondent and for the past 10 years has been at the FT.

FTfm blog: a guide

Comment: To comment, please register with FT.com. Register for free here. Please also see our comments policy here.
Contact: You can reach us using this email format: firstname.surname@ft.com
Time: UK time is shown on our posts.
Follow us: Links to our Twitter and RSS feeds are at the top of the blog. You can also read us on your mobile device, by going to www.ft.com/ftfmblog

FT Blogs

Archive

« OctApril 2014
M T W T F S S
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
282930