Podcast: Continuous Disclosure: Does ethical investment pay?

Does investing ethically stop you from making decent returns? How do you know if a company isn’t just greenwashing by making false environmental promises?

This week the New Zealand Herald launched the first in a new series of podcasts called Continuous Disclosure where senior journalists from our business team talk with an expert about topics affecting the investment world.

Fresh off the back of the COP26 talks in Glasgow Money Editor Tamsyn Parker speaks to Robbie Urquhart, senior portfolio manager at Fisher Funds about whether these talks really matter and how investment managers use the decisions made at them to frame up their investment choices.

Ethical investment is a growing area of interest for Kiwi investors but it can also be a minefield matching up your ethics with how a company operates and how investment managers deal with those companies.

Urquhart says one of the most common questions he gets asked about it is whether investing ethically precludes you from making decent returns.

Ethical investment isn’t just about the environment. Social and governance factors like whether a company is involved in modern slave labour or human rights abuses are also issues investors need to weigh up.

From the end of this month newly appointed KiwiSaver default funds will also have to exclude fossil fuel investments as part of a Government mandate, a move expected to ripple across the industry.

Urquhart also shares his tips for those just wanting to get started when it comes to ethical investment and how consumers can tell if a company or investment manager is just greenwashing.

Continuous Disclosure is available on iHeartRadio, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. New episodes come out every second Wednesday.

You can find more New Zealand Herald podcasts at nzherald.co.nz/podcasts or on iHeartRadio.

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