Xers Say, "ESG Me ASAP"

Growing up in the greed-is-good 1980s, we Gen Xers were first introduced to the idea of investing as something that ruthless Wall Street sharks, slick-suited bad guys and Alex P. Keaton did to make tons of money.

Now that we're grown up, working and saving for what we hope is retirement, we're looking at it in a different way. It isn't just about the money.

We are wary of big institutions and well aware that plenty of big corporations actually employ those slick-suited bad guys and we don't want to give our money to Weyland-Utani Corporation or some other such firm dedicated to destroying the world.

ESG is the handy TLA (three-letter acronym) to refer to "environmental, social, governance," which are the three pillars that investors use to evaluate the sustainability and ethical impact of an investment. It's socially and environmentally responsible investing, and it is a growing trend.

While ESG is often associated with younger millennial investors, a recent Wall Street Journal article points that, in fact, it's Gen X that is a big mover and shaker in this space. Turns out we also care about the greater social good, and as a general rule, we have more resources to put toward it.

The article quotes a 54-year-old X-investor named Donna Childs:

"It's no longer about avoiding the bad. It's about positively affirming the good and knowing that in doing so your financial returns will improve."


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