The number of invested assets now dedicated to SRI practices has grown by 76% in the last two years, representing 18% of all assets under management.
Despite these impressive numbers, there are still naysayers about the potential profitability of SRI. “Mounting evidence indicates institutional investors can use SRI to grow their portfolios and promote their beliefs simultaneously,” writes Pensions & Investments.
The proof is in the pudding, and by pudding we mean the KLD 400, an index of socially responsible stocks. From 1990 to 2012, the KLD has maintained a higher return on investment than the S&P 500, according to a report by RBC Global Asset Management.
Still not convinced?
A study published in the Social Science Research Network in 2014 found that portfolios comprised of companies with higher SRI rankings outperformed those with lower rankings, even when considering outside factors like volatility. Another study at Harvard published this year suggests the stronger performance of SRI portfolios is due to “shareholder value-enhancing.”
“In other words, when companies treat workers better, reduce energy waste or support local communities, they don’t just make the world a better place. They can also improve worker retention, save money and generate brand loyalty — thereby increasing their chances of long-term success and boosting their stock prices,” P&I writes.
This is great news for Team SRI, and hopefully encourages more investors to embrace this investment style.
Check out the full story from Pensions & Investments here.