How to Be a Socially Responsible Investor

Let’s assume one is concerned about “green issues”  -- protection of the environment -- which happens to be one of the most popular criteria for many investors today.

We can look at three ways to invest responsibly that I define as “passive,” “active,” or “direct.”    The passive approach for a “green” advocate would be to by into an index that support and fund companies with a strong environmental record.  The S&P 500, for example, has screened out companies whose performance in various social areas is substandard.  Investing in this way is “passive,” in that one has made the investment and does nothing else.

On the other hand, an active approach to SRI would be purchasing shares directly from a company, since direct shareholders have a more active role and can vote on many company issues.

The direct approach to SRI is more commonly known to us as charitable giving.  In this case, one donates money directly to an organization or cause with no intention of a financial return – although often tax advantages are associated with this practice.

Thorley Wealth Management is eager and able to assist clients in all three of these methods, being sure your investment or dollars are supporting your goals and objectives as well as your social values.



Investing in the stock market involves gains and losses and may not be suitable for all investors. An investment with a socially responsible focus may limit the investment options available to the investment and may result in returns lower than those from investments not subject to such investment considerations.