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Ethical Banks

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JohnMBarlowJohnMBarlow Forumite
1 posts
MoneySaving Newbie
Hello, I'm looking to change Banks. My top criteria are ethics and green credentials. I want a Bank with a strong ethical code that invests in green renewable energy sources that is moving its investments away from the Oil giants and fossil fuels in general. Any help greatly appreciated. Regards John
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Replies

  • edited 13 July at 1:53PM
    happy_hazelnutshappy_hazelnuts Forumite
    127 posts
    100 Posts
    edited 13 July at 1:53PM
    you could try a search engine eg google but others are available....

    However i did the search so you don"t have to! There are a few listed so hopefuuly something fits what you are looking for.

    I quite like Starling.

    https://www.curiouslyconscious.com/2020/02/best-ethical-banks-current-accounts-uk.html/
  • colstencolsten Forumite
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    Good article on the face of it. I can't judge what is said about the various banks but I know the author is wrong to talk about "the UK Government’s Current Account Switch Service" (CASS). CASS has got no more to do with the UK Government than most UK banks do.

    CASS is run by BACS, the not-for-profit organisation behind Direct Debit in the UK, now owned and operated by Pay.UK. Pay.UK is a company limited by guarantee and has Guarantors rather than shareholders. The Guarantors are most UK banks, plus some other Financial Services companies and technology providers.

    Bottom line: do your own research.
  • jonnygee2jonnygee2 Forumite
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    Starling probably has the strongest Ethics statement I've seen https://www.starlingbank.com/about/ethics-statement/   . Neither Monzo nor Starling currently hold investments in anything as that's not part of your business mode, and being online only, digital first banks they are probably 'greener' than anything with branches by default.
  • London7766551London7766551 Forumite
    52 posts
    10 Posts
    https://www.triodos.co.uk

    We only finance companies that focus on people, the environment or culture.

    https://www.triodos.co.uk/about-us

  • edited 13 July at 4:37PM
    gsmhgsmh Forumite
    89 posts
    10 Posts Name Dropper
    edited 13 July at 4:37PM
    There is only one - Triodos. It only lends to ethical companies and is completely transparent as to which companies it lends to. You can browse these companies from its website. I've had an account with Triodos for a few months and am very pleased with its online and mobile banking and with its customer service. The account has a charge of £3 per month, but IMO is worth it to know you're not helping to fund companies involved in fossil fuel or other nefarious things. The only downside is that Triodos does not offer Apple or Android Pay - but there is an easy workaround. You get yourself a free Curve debit card, add it to Apple or Android Pay and make your Triodos debit card its source. It works perfectly and your Triodos account is debited immediately in real time as and when you make a contactless transaction.
    Triodos is offering a £60 voucher to spend in Ethical Superstore when you open a current account with them and your balance reaches £100. You will need to use this link:
    https://www.triodos.co.uk/yeo-valley?utm_campaign=yeovalley
    The only other ethical bank is the Co-operative Bank. It has an ethical policy, but is owned by hedge-funders who are looking to sell as soon as a buyer can be found. It has also refused to have its ethical policy externally audited for the second year in a row. The Ethical Consumer magazine gives Triodos the number one spot for ethical banking.
    Please ask if you need to know anything else.


  • jonnygee2jonnygee2 Forumite
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    There is only one - Triodos. It only lends to ethical companies and is completely transparent as to which companies it lends to. 

    I don't think this is necessarily true. I think there are other banks that are ethical (see above), even if they don't primarily market themselves as 'an ethical bank'. 

  • edited 13 July at 7:39PM
    gsmhgsmh Forumite
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    edited 13 July at 7:39PM
    A bank can be considered ethical because is hasn't (yet) strayed into areas others would consider unethical. Metro Bank is considered a fairly ethical bank for this reason, as is Nationwide, Starling, Monzo and a few others. If that fulfils a need for ethicality then fair enough. I got the impression the OP felt the same as I do, in that they want to bank with an organisation which positively and proactively embraces its ethical status and invests in green enterprises, energy and so on.
    Ethical Consumer rates several banks out of 20:
    Triodos 16
    Cumberland BS 13.5
    Starling 13
    Monzo 12
    Nationwide 12
    Metro Bank 11.5
    Virgin Money 8.5
    Co-operative Bank 7.5
    ICICI 6.5
    Handelsbanken 5.5
    BOS/LLoyds Group and TSB 4.5
    Santander 4
    NatWest/RBS 3.5
    HSBC 3
    Barclays 1.5
    Tesco 0.5



  • colstencolsten Forumite
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    Presumably Triodos got their 16 before their involvement with the scandalous practices in Cambodia came to light. Goodness knows how reliable the rest of the ratings can be considered.
  • gsmhgsmh Forumite
    89 posts
    10 Posts Name Dropper
    colsten said:
    Presumably Triodos got their 16 before their involvement with the scandalous practices in Cambodia came to light. Goodness knows how reliable the rest of the ratings can be considered.
    Probably. Given how strongly I feel about banking ethically do you think I should move to another bank? I can't open a Cumberland BS account because I don't live in their marketing area. Given your knowledge of banks and banking, could you re-jig the list in the light of your experience? I already have a Metro bank account. Should I shift everything over to them and close my Triodos account?
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