How young millionaires invest their money

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Millennials are changing the investing agenda.

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They don’t just want to grow their money: Many Millennials want to achieve social and environmental goals through their investments. It’s called “impact investing” and it’s not just a buzz word.

 “Impact investing is hitting the mainstream,” says Jackie VanderBrug, investment strategist at U.S. Trust, a division of Bank of America (BAC). “We’re hitting a tipping point.”

VanderBrug knows. She and her team at U.S. Trust recently surveyed 684 individuals with investable assets worth $3 million or more. Among the millionaires, dozens were Millennials between the ages of 18 and 35.

The overwhelming majority of Millennials surveyed — 93% — believe that a company’s social and environmental impact is key to their investing decisions. That’s up from 74% two years ago, according to the U.S. Trust study.

In some ways, it’s not new. Students have long protested at universities to end investments in coal or against governments like South Africa during the apartheid era. Last year, Columbia University and the University of Southern California both dumped their investments in prison stocks after student protests.

But instead of divesting, new investors want to see companies make an impact in a positive way.

 

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