Customers ask banks to be more transparent about environmental impact of savings

20th Mar 2020

Customers want more transparency from banks when it comes to seeing where and how money is being invested, a new report has found.

Seven in 10 people think their banks and other savings providers need to be more open about where their money is being invested, according to the survey of more than 2,000 people from Triodos Bank.

Two-thirds of the survey’s respondents say they don’t know whether or not their money or savings are used to support fuels that may have a detrimental effect on the environment, such as oil, gas or coal, despite half of respondents specifically stating they do not want their money to support fossil fuels.

The survey indicated that banking customers have a strong interest in sustainability generally – more than half of people in Belfast (52%) said they would switch to a renewable energy supplier. Meanwhile, more than 80% of people in Plymouth said they avoid single-use plastic and 61% would avoid ‘fast fashion’. And 14% of Nottingham residents said they would consider switching to a vegan diet.

Customers who aren’t sure where or how their money is being invested, therefore, want more transparency – particularly when it comes to their banks, with one third of respondents in Bristol saying they would use an ethical bank.

Bevis Watts, Chief Executive of Tridos Bank, said: “The UK’s banks should be using the money saved or invested with them to protect the long-term interests of their customers in creating a sustainable future.”

Watts said there was a clear demand for “much greater transparency” over where banks invest their money, allowing customers to “make informed choices” .

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