Thursday, May 28, 2009

Ethical Investment

Investing in an ethical and socially responsible way is now acknowledged as a sound medium to long-term strategy. Whilst there will be those who are happy to make easy money at the expense of others, the trend for individuals, charities and companies is to seek profit responsibly via ethical investment is rapidly increasing. After all, who would disagree with investing in companies that have good employment records, manufacture products that people want to buy at a fair price, and on which a good profit is made? It is important to remember that much of socially responsible investment concerns the positive aspects of business life such as respect for the community (local and global) and for the environment. In these troubled times, an enlightened attitude to our responsibilities to future generations is imperative in business, if a company is going to survive.

The outlook turned sharply negative earlier this year. In the first quarter, worldwide investment in green energy projects of all kinds plunged 53% compared with the same period in 2008, to $13.3 billion... But that picture is already starting to brighten. After raising just $100 million from the debt and equity markets in the first quarter, green energy companies have scared up $2 billion in the second quarter so far." As oil prices climb back up and the realization that carbon based energy will become ever more expensive due to climate change measures increasingly restricting their use, green energy investments are likely to continue to gain.

Here, are ten Green mutual funds, each offering new prospects to participate in social and environmental responsibility while profiting from our expanding need to conserve and sustain global resources. They include: Appleseed, Integrity Growth & Income, Wells Fargo Advantage Social Sustainability, Dreyfus Global Sustainability, Calvert Large Cap Value, Calvert Global Water, Pax World Global Green, Pax World International, Pax World Small Cap and Firsthand Alternative Energy. Each fund offers a unique blend of financial pathways to sustainable prosperity.

Peter Zhang May 2009

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