Christian financial advisers support more social investment

Christian financial advisers are supporting proposals to stimulate social investment in the UK.

The Association of Christian Financial Advisers says proposed amendments to the Financial Services Bill could encourage a new wave of social-minded investors.

The amendments would lead to a reduction in the regulatory barriers that prevent financial advisers from distributing social investment products

If passed, the amendments would signal government backing for small-scale investors to pursue social goals, while recognising the potential greater risk to their capital.

The amendments have been proposed by the House of Lords and reach the third day of the report stage today.

ACFA said the government support could provide a major stimulus to the "nascent" social investment sector by enabling small-scale investors to support projects that have a clear social benefit.

Aidan Vaughan, spokesman for the Association of Christian Financial Advisers, said: "This developing sector was in danger of being killed off at birth by undue regulatory worries and possible future problems in the professional indemnity insurance world."

"We look forward to product providers developing innovative 'mainstream' products that will generate both investment and social returns whilst still protecting the consumer's interests of security and flexibility."

Social investment was a focus of ACFA's annual conference in Hoddesdon last week.

Guest speaker, Gavin Francis of social investment consultancy Worthstone, told the conference: "Our mission is to get out there in the world and be a blessing to all nations.

"Here is an opportunity for financial planning to take an even more pivotal role – placing capital where it will produce both a positive financial impact and a positive financial return."