More people choose ethical pensions

More and more people are thinking about the future of the planet when saving for the future, according to research from a leading UK personal pension provider.

Co-operative Insurance (CIS) found that almost half of their new personal pension customers chose to invest their pension in ethical funds.

Their figures also suggested that men were more ethically motivated than women, with 17% more men investing in ethical funds.

The average 35-year-old man is the most likely customer to invest in an ethical pension, which includes funds that actively engage with companies to encourage them to focus on green initiatives.

Danny Hurley, head of pensions at Co-operative Insurance, said: "Over the last 20 years, the growth in ethical investment has been immense.

"When it comes to making a major financial decision like choosing a pension, people are becoming more conscious of the impact that they can have on the environment by choosing their investments in a socially responsible manner.

"A personal pension is the easiest way for someone to make provisions for their retirement and is a vehicle for the more conscience-driven consumers out there to help to bring about positive change through their long-term savings."

Figures from the Investment Management Association show that in the third quarter of 2007, a net £135m flowed into ethical funds - an increase of 500% on the amount invested in the third quarter of 2006.

Year-on-year total ethical funds under management increased by 29% against an overall market rate of 21%.

In June 2000, Government amended the Pensions Act to require fund managers to tell members whether they considered the ethical, social or environmental impact of the companies they invested in.

Kate Martin



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