Savings: your bank adviser should ask you about your preferences in terms of sustainable development

Since Tuesday, August 2, your bank must ask you questions before subscribing to an investment product, to find out if you want to make more responsible investments. This is a new measure from the European Commission aimed at redirecting savings towards sustainable development.

The ecological fiber will now have to be part of the vocabulary of your bank advisor. The latter, like wealth management advisers with the status of “financial investment adviser” (CIF) from January 1, 2023, will be required to ask you about “your sustainability preferences”. If so, they should recommend green or social investments relevant to your project.

An additional European standard

This new regulation supplements the recent rules put in place for life insurance contracts and retirement savings plans. Indeed, for the past 7 months, each of them must offer at least one solidarity fund, one SRI fund and one Greenfin fund.

This new questionnaire on the importance of the environmental consequences of your investment, goes in the direction of a better consideration of the problems of sustainable development in the banking sector. The advisers will now having to ask you questions directly to assess your preferences“at the level of a financial investment or with regard to your entire portfolio”, according to the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF).

Extra-financial criteria taken into account

To assess your preferences in terms of sustainability and advise you on the appropriate investments, your bank adviser will rely on 3 axes, underlines the AMF. First of all, the proportion of your money invested in activities considered environmentally sustainable by the European classification called Taxonomy (or taxonomy).

The latter is based on environmental objectives set by the European Union, such as adaptation to climate change, the sustainable use and protection of aquatic and marine resources, and the transition to a circular economy.

Next, your advisor will take into account the proportion of your investment that you want to see invested in sustainable investments, as well as the “negative impacts” of your investment (greenhouse gas emissions, hazardous waste, violation of human rights, etc.).

What does this mandatory green questionnaire contain?

Do you want to support a particular environmental objective, such as the preservation of biodiversity? Would you like to invest all or part of your savings in certain sectors of activity such as renewable energies? Do you accept that a certain percentage of your investments finance fossil fuels? Do you want to be sure that your investment has no negative impact on the fight against climate change?

Here is a non-exhaustive list of questions to which you may be subjected. If no investment meets your expectations in terms of sustainability, your advisor “will offer to adapt your initial preferences, which must be recorded in writing, in order to be able to recommend an investment to you”, according to the ‘AMF.

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