05 Feb, 2008
Published: 11:21 Tuesday 05 February
By: Daniel Grote, New Model News Reporter
Standard Life ethical funds will no longer
invest in airlines after a survey of its investors revealed a
significant portion opposed to such stocks.
Standard Life Investments (SLI) announced the policy change
following the results of its latest survey of its ethical
investors, in which 30% of respondents said they would prefer its
ethical funds not to invest in airlines.
'In light of the sizeable percentage of our investors wishing to
avoid investment in airlines, the [Standard Life] Ethical Committee
has decided that our ethical policy should be adapted to reflect
these views,' said Julie McDowell, head of sustainable and
responsible investment at SLI.
'I am sure that investors welcome the fact that they play an
important part in helping to shape our ethical fund criteria.'
SLI has withdrawn all its investments in airline stocks from its
ethical funds as a result of the decision.
Standard Life Investments currently manages £588.5 million
over its ethical fund range, which includes the UK Ethical, Ethical
Corporate Bond, European Equity Ethical, Life Ethical and Pension
Standard Life investor's ethical stance on airlines has also
coincided with a seeming downturn in prospects for the European
Low-cost airline Ryanair has warned its profits could fall by up to
50% in its next financial year, and cautioned that the European
airline sector was facing a downturn.
The possibility of higher oil prices, poor consumer demand, weaker
sterling and higher airport costs were all reasons for gloom, said
chief executive Michael O'Leary.