Britons seek ethical lending practices from banks

Posted on November 15th, 2010 | Categories - News

More people want banks to invest ethically.

Ethical investment has become a bigger concern for banking customers.

Almost three quarters of Britons want banks to put ethical lending policies in place preventing them from investing in firms involved in controversial areas, according to a recent report.

The research, carried out by the Ethical Investment Research Service, found that over 80% of banking customers think it is important for financial institutions to pay more attention to the environmental, social and governmental risks when deciding which companies to invest in.

The poll also found that 66% of participants thought that banks had not learnt the lessons needed to prevent a future financial crisis adding that they had returned to ‘business as usual’.

Almost 80% of people said that banks need to disclose where they lend or invest money and 38% said they were more likely to change providers if there was more information available on the high street about ethical and green products. Just under 40% or respondents said they would switch providers if there was more information covering the ways in which green products make a difference in the world.

Mark Robertson, Head of Communications at EIRIS said: “It’s clear that there’s a lot more that financial institutions can do to build trust and persuade us that they have switched away from short-term, unsustainable investing and lending practices. Our survey shows that there’s a huge appetite for a more intelligent approach to finance which places a greater emphasis on society and environment as part of a path towards a more sustainable financial future”.

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