As we all know there's a certain social pressure on us all to invest only in those industries or companies that are morally sound. This is something we should indeed do of course, we should use our own interactions in a market economy to increase our utility. Knowing that we're not doing bad is an increase in such utility and thus we should invest, just as we buy or otherwise act, according to our tastes.
It's a little different when we forced to do so according to the morals of another but still.
However, there's always that feeling that we're giving up income by doing so. Thus this is good news:
Ethical investors make more money than those who look purely at financial measures, according to a major new study.
Environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues have typically been deemed to be fashionable but bad for business. This is because “ethical” investors have to limit the number of companies which they can back, losing some opportunities for profit.
But a Deutsche Bank study of more than a decade’s worth of data could turn that situation on its head, showing companies that can pass an ESG test are typically better bets than those which fail.
ESG is of course a set of the morals of others that we are urged to conform to. There's an entire industry trying to persuade us to do so as well. The great thing about this news being that we can toss the entire concept.
For the only reason we are urged by those social pressures to conform to this set of moral standards about investment is because of that worry, that fear, that income will be lost by doing so. If no income is lost, if this claim is true that in fact more income is made, then we don't need the moral insistence, do we? We don't even need the moral classification itself.
For if ESG investing makes more money then everyone will invest in an ESG manner without being urged to. We can just leave the lust for gelt and pilf to do the work without the branding, the advertising, the suasion or anything else.
That ethical investing makes more money means we don't have to have that concept of ethical investing, doesn't it?