Impact Investment Questions added to Fact Find

Posted on: May 11th, 2015

Impact Investment Questions added to Fact Find

Impact Investment Questions added to SRI Fact Find

In response to the growing importance of ‘Impact Investment’ sriServices has today added three related questions to their online  ‘sriStyleFinder‘ fact find questionnaire .  This means that when these questions are selected the user will be told that they may favour ‘Specialist’ fund options.

The link to the client microsite that explains this area is:

 Impact Investment is subtly different from what most advisers might regard as SRI or ethical investment – but in many cases these options have a great deal in common.  In particularly – ‘encouraging positive change’ is a common aim for investors and fund managers alike across these areas.

A major difference between these two fields is that Impact Investment typically focuses more on ‘outputs’ and in particular the ‘measuring positive impacts’.    This can lead to more concentrated investment in smaller companies and therefore potentially higher investment risk – hence the ‘Specialist’ classification.  This will suit some investors, but not others.

This does not however mean that more specialist investment areas such as Impact Investment of Social Impact funds should be ignored by advisers or investors.

Many people welcome the opportunity to hold a proportion of their investment in funds where it is very clear what their money is being used for and who is likely to benefit from their investment.  However in many cases this can imply higher risk, which is not always suitable.  This makes seeking professional, independent financial advice all the more important.

The aim of our online questionnaire is to help clients to articulate their aims and identify the sriStyles  that most closely fit their ‘sustainable and responsible investment’ aims and objectives.

Once someone’s  preferred ‘sriStyles’ have been identified it is them possible to find relevant SRI options quickly and easily via the Fund EcoMarket database .

An updated version of Fund EcoMarket will be launched soon.

Adviser Notes:

  •  The number of ‘Specialist’ fund options on Fund EcoMarket is limited as we only represent regulated retail onshore funds
  •  In order to ensure that each sriStyle has equal weighting within the questionnaire there are three questions per style (24 in total) .  Each represents a slightly different aspects of the style .
  • Most of the questions on the SRI StyleFinder fact find direct users to their top three ‘best fit’ sriStyles – however  the Impact Investment/Specialist questions currently only direct users to the ‘Specialist’ options although some other options (eg Sustainability funds) may also appeal.  This may evolve over time.
  • Impact Investment can be an excellent accompaniment to other SRI and ethical options as investors often aim to combine their financial goals with their personal aims.  Specialist options are particularly useful for those who want detailed information about how their money is ‘making a difference’.
  • It is essential not to confuse an interest in this area with philanthropy or charity.  All funds on this database are true investments and aim to offer decent returns.
  • Asset Manager WHEB recently launched a report setting out the positive impacts of where they invest.  This is a welcome innovation however their fund remains classified as a  ‘Sustainability Themed’ fund on Fund EcoMarket.