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Ethical Investment at a tipping point

Mindful Money is launching its campaign to take ethical investing into the mainstream, with a high-profile conference, publicity and events, and an exciting new fund on its online platform.

Mindful Money Founder and CEO, Barry Coates explains: “Surveys show that ethical investing in New Zealand is at a tipping point. 74% of the public want to invest ethically but only 8% do so proactively. Mindful Money has been developed to overcome the barriers of a lack of objective information and the difficulty of finding reliable information about where funds are invested. We make it simple, quick and free to switch into an ethical KiwiSaver fund.”

The launch will be kicked off at a high-level conference in Auckland on the afternoon of Tuesday 3rd September, with the theme of Investing for Sustainability.

The conference will be opened by an address from the Minister of Finance and followed by panels to discuss policy opportunities and engaging the public. The invitation-only conference, to be held at KPMG on Tuesday afternoon will be filled to capacity.

Barry Coates: “This is an important conference highlighting two equally important actions: there is a need for a legal and policy shift to urgently ramp up finance for climate action and other priorities; and a need to shift the growing pool of finance in KiwiSaver towards more sustainable and ethical funds. Mindful Money is bringing together the key actorss to move ahead on both challenges.”

The public awareness campaign will reach out to target audiences during the month of September, including during Money Week, being held from 9-15 September. Money Week, coordinated by the Commission for Financial Capability, is themed as “Now we’re talking”. Mindful Money’s focus will be on talking about where the public’s money is invested.

The website shows New Zealanders where their money goes. It uses radical transparency to reveal which companies their KiwiSaver fund invests in, and in which sectors.

A survey last year identified the main issues of public concern – fossil fuels, weapons, gambling, alcohol, tobacco, pornography, palm oil, GMOs, human rights violations and animal cruelty. Now anyone can see where each of the 265 KiwiSaver funds is invested.

Barry Coates: “Mindful Money has brought radical transparency to the KiwiSaver scheme. The vast majority of New Zealanders want to know how their money is being used. Now, for the first time, it is easy for them to find out.”

Mindful Money’s campaign will reach out broadly across society. Our survey shows that older New Zealanders, as well as Millennials, want to invest ethically. The Mindful Money website enables them to quickly find a KiwiSaver fund that fits their values and switch into a more ethical fund.

The ethical funds that Mindful Money promotes now includes an exciting new fund – CareSaver, managed by Pathfinder Asset Management. CareSaver combines broad exclusions on issues like fossil fuels, weapons and animal cruelty with engagement to raise company standards.

Barry Coates: “We welcome these exciting new CareSaver funds onto the Mindful Money platform. Their strongly ethical policies on climate change and animal welfare will be popular with a wide range of current and new KiwiSaver investors. This is yet another reason for New Zealanders to use the Mindful Money website to find the fund that fits their values.

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