The view that austerity curtails ethics could be challenged by a report that found upper mass affluent retail investors would invest in socially responsible investment (SRI) funds in the next six months to two years.
CoreData Research said the sector had been on the cusp of growth for some years and may benefit from a pent-up demand if there are no huge market shifts.
Absolute return strategies were also very appealing to this tier of investor. Upper mass affluent investors representing £442.6 billion (€526.1 billion) in net assets say they would invest in SRI products within six to two years and a group representing £428.4billion in net assets indicated their interest to make an absolute return allocation over the same period of time.
Slightly less wealthy mass affluent investors favoured venture capital trusts and multi-management funds, while the research, called ‘Funds Management – The next generation’, also found that the most popular product types for mass market retail investors were absolute returns and investment trusts.
However, 10% of investors across all the asset types said they would need to learn more about a product before they would be willing to put money into it.
More than a third of investors indicated varying levels of unfamiliarity with long/short funds, and almost half of investors (48.5%) said they would never be willing to invest in long/short strategies.
The study involved responses from 1,025 individuals regarding their familiarity and willingness to invest in twelve asset classes.
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