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ESG climbs up Financial Planning agenda

Three in five (60%) Financial Planners are now factoring in ESG related questions when speaking to clients and undertaking fact finds, according to a new report.

A further one in five (22%) of those surveyed said they expected to introduce ESG related questions in the next twelve months, according to the report from analyst firm AKG and wealth manager Charles Stanley.

The report said there is growing interest amongst consumers with investible assets of more than £100,000 to ensure their investments are sustainable and socially responsible. It said that nearly a quarter (24%) of this group of respondents had independently reviewed their investments to ensure that they are sustainable and socially responsible, and over a fifth (21%) had done so with the support of an adviser. 

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John Porteous, group head of distribution at Charles Stanley said: “While awareness and appetite for socially responsible investing are increasing, we still need to complete the shift from niche investing to the mainstream.

“One of the main misconceptions is that it doesn’t generate such attractive yields, but our analysis shows that investors have been significantly more likely to generate outperformance from ethical or sustainable funds than from standard funds.

“We need to provide the confidence that this type of investing is delivering for people’s financial future as well as for the global good.”

AKG carried out three separate market research exercises, with both adviser and consumer audiences.  It surveyed 100 advisers during March/April 2020, 1041 consumers on 15/16 April 2020, and carried out 20 qualitative interviews with intermediary firms during April/May 2020.

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