Ethical investing for the long term – Standard Life Investments comments

Global investment manager, Standard Life Investments reflects on ten years of ethical investing in the £206.3m Standard Life Investments UK Ethical Fund and highlights the results of its 2014 Annual Ethical Investor Survey which shows that good Business Ethics, Corporate Governance and Engagement are important to investors.

During the last decade, the fund has grown in size almost four fold1 returning 149.3% to investors versus the UK All Companies sector average of 129% and its ethical subsector average of

The fund has returned above median performance over all key time periods in the UK All Companies Sector and has been a consistent top quartile performer in its ethical subsector.

The UK Ethical Fund aims to provide long-term growth by investing in a diversified portfolio of UK equities that meet Standard Life Investments’ ethical criteria. It benefits from Standard Life Investments’ successful UK Equity team approach, its robust focus on change investment process and has a Morningstar OBSR Analyst Bronze rating.

Lesley Duncan, manager of Standard Life Investments UK Ethical Fund, said: “I’m in the privileged position of being able to reflect on the changing sentiment of ethical investors over a decade.

“Our research shows that the ethical criteria that remain important to our investors have been consistent over the years with areas like – weapons, tobacco, human rights and environmental issues high on the radar.

“Interestingly however Business Ethics, which focusses on Corporate Governance practices, anti-corruption practises and company remuneration policies, has become a recent area of interest for our ethical investors.

“These are in themselves themes that are close to the heart of Standard Life Investments and which are driven by our long-standing and well established approach in influencing the companies in which we invest through our proactive approach in engagement.

“Our most recent ethical investor survey also indicates that investors believe that board level committees should exist to oversee environmental, social and health and safety matters and reveals very high interest lending as being a new area our investors are concerned about.”

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