Monday, 8 October 2007

UKSIF report on pension funds and SRI

One of the annoying things about the failure of many corporate pension funds to take SRI seriously is that some of them are sponsored by companies which are leaders in the area of corporate social responsibility. With this in the mind the UK Social Investment Forum surveyed companies which are included in initiatives like the FTSE4Good index to see what their practice was like.

The overall message was fairly positive with about three quarters of respondents saying that they do have an SRI policy. Most common methods of implementation are shareholder voting and engagement. However worryingly (if you have any knowledge of the wide variation in fund manager commitment to SRI, or corporate governance for that matter) most funds said that they also delegate implementation of their policy to their fund managers.

The UKSIF report also ranks pension schemes in terms of their practice. The BT scheme comes top of the list, with the Friends Provident and Stagecoach schemes close behind. Of these I'm actually most impressed by Stagecoach as both the BT scheme and the Friends Prov scheme have in-house asset manager expertise to draw upon.

Anyway, the full report can be downloaded here.

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