Pensions are one of those things that almost everyone has, but not everyone really understands. It can be confusing figuring out exactly how investments work, and where you’re contributions are going. One thing that more and more plan holders are getting involved in, though, is whether or not their pension exists within an ethical financial framework. You might not understand the precise calculations of your pension, but you’ve got a good chance of figuring out whether your money is being invested in ethical companies, as long as the information is available. This article will give a brief guide to what an ethical pension is, why they are becoming more popular, and how to get one.
What is an Ethical Pension?
An ethical pension isn’t a specific type of monetary investment which radical alters the financial mechanisms of a pension scheme. It works in exactly the same way as a conventional pension in that you pay a certain amount of money in, this is used to buy stocks and shares, and at the end you get a lump sum and income to keep you going through retirement. In this sense then, an ethical pension isn’t any sort of “branded” pension or code for a different way of investing money.
An ethical pension simply means that the stocks and shares which are invested in using your pension are ethically sound, i.e. the companies have a proven commitment to ethical practises. This can be anything from total transparency in financial transactions, plus charitable donations; a good track record in pastoral care for staff; or a keen commitment to environmentalism and sustainability. Really, it can be anything you view as “ethical” and therefore would like to put your money towards.
If a person changes their pension from one which invests in a company which deals in firearms or promotes gambling, for example, you could deem this person as moving to an ethical pension without their new pension being invested in anything particularly world changing. Ethical pensions are rather a manifestation of social consciousness, and can have an impact in reducing the financial power of “unethical” companies.
Why are they becoming more popular?
In line with the rise of interest in ethical consumerism on the high streets and online, consumers are now starting to think about the more invisible or “abstract” uses of their money. Ethical products are becoming more and more popular, and with this comes a desire to use ethical banks, invest ethically and start ethical pensions.
Some people worry that an ethical pension will be tantamount to a reduced pension, but this really isn’t the case. You’ll likely to get just as much as you would have otherwise. Indeed, with the rising popularity of ethical companies it’s not really legitimate to view an ethical pension as any sort of financial risk.
How do I get one?
Financial planning for retirement is extremely important, and if you’re just starting to plan you might want to think about an ethical pension. In order to get one you need to establish with your pension provider how they will invest your money. Since ethical pensions have become more popular the government have demanded that companies publicise more information about social and environmental concerns which relate to their pension schemes.
<p><a href="https://plus.google.com/107051688107542784444/about?rel=author">+Richard Collis</a></p>