Via the New York Post: When Vice is Nice: Sin-vestments Are On A Joyride.
When maximizing returns are the bottom-line for investors, why should they bother with socially responsible investments instead of choosing the investment that provides the highest return? What if they curious SRI investor was presented with the following data:
“Tobacco giants Reynolds American (up 42.8 percent in the last 12 months) and British American Tobacco (up 35.3 percent) are smoking while International Game Technology (up 32.2 percent) and MGM Mirage (up 10 percent) have gamboled higher than the market in general.
“For example, the S&P 500 has risen just 6.1 percent over the past year, a pace similar to that of the Dow Jones industrial average, while the Nasdaq index is up just 5 percent.”
There are are a lot of articles and opinions providing detailed justification for choosing socially responsible investing options (say, ones that average 10% over the long-haul) instead of plopping money into Reynolds American, British American Tobacco, or International Game Technology, however, many investors will care little about justification and simply chase the highest return. I suppose that is okay because it just leaves more room for the rest of us…