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I have some extra money that I would like to invest to both benefit myself with a moderate return on investment but also for mutual benefit to contribute to sustainable economic development.

As I have literally no experience with banking and investing, how would one approach an investment with the aforementioned objective?

  • 2
    As Jan also suggested a good start is to switch to a bank that invests primarily in the areas you find important. There is an independent organization called FairFinanceGuide International that rates the sustainability, fairness and transparency of banks in several countries. They started with a rating guide in The Netherlands in 2009, but now also have ratings for banks in Belgium, Germany, France, Sweden, Indonesia, Japan and Brazil. – THelper Aug 4 '16 at 7:19
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You have literally no experience with banking and investing, so you should let someone else handle the actual trading.

Many banks have investment funds targeted at specific areas (sustainable development, microloans), or avoiding areas (nuclear, weapons, fossil fuels, etc.)

Assuming you have consumer organisations or independent investigators in your country*, find the reviews that they publish about sustainability of banks. Pick those that come out best, then examine the funds they offer, and invest your money in one of those.

One additional benefit of choosing an 'ordinary' bank (instead of e.g. private investment funds) is that they are likely more stable, with a more reliable return on investment. They also have people overseeing them.

* (You may want to add that to your question)

  • Thank you Jan! I will have a look at the investment options that my bank Triodos provides. – orschiro Aug 3 '16 at 19:58
  • Aha, you are also Dutch. Yes ASN or Triodos are the two to investigate. I bank at ASN. Check out the Eerlijke-bankwijzer – Jan Doggen Aug 4 '16 at 7:30
  • @JanDoggen I suspect the OP is German because of the link to a German website in the profile. – THelper Aug 4 '16 at 9:25
  • Thanks! Indeed I am German but have a legacy account at Triodos back from the days when I studied Sustainable Development at Utrecht University. I will read through the resources and then decide between Triodos and ASN. – orschiro Aug 4 '16 at 16:50

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