Less than a month after introducing CSRIC to the world, the press has been pouring in. As many of you know, I am a full-time professor at the College for Financial Planning and this has comprised of the bulk of my work efforts for months (actually years) now. Soon there will be a new way to differentiate advisors truly dedicated to SRI in the industry from everyone else who is looking to get a piece of the pie -- these people REALLY care about learning and understanding this exciting new field of finance.
The following is an article that Forbes published on the new designation back in late June. To read the original article from Forbes, CLICK HERE.
Sign Of The Times: Designation For Financial Planners Underscores Demand For Impact Investing
by Anne Field on June 25, 2018
Social enterprises seeking funding—or planning to do so soon: There’s a new development with potentially productive implications for you. An impact-investing oriented professional designation for financial advisors was recently unveiled by the College of Financial Planning, in collaboration with the US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment.
The move is another indication of an ever-increasing demand among investors for more impact-related options—and a growing pool of funding for impact enterprises.
Called the Chartered SRI Counselor (CSRIC), the designation is aimed at financial advisors who want to demonstrate their bone fides as experts in the various responsible investing approaches out there and the environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors that should be considered by like-minded investors.
“This is really a response from requests we were getting from advisors looking for more than an introductory level training in this area,” says Michael Young, manager of education programs for US SIF, a nonprofit aimed at shifting investment practices toward sustainability. “This is a way for professional advisors to show they have more than a passing interest in impact investing and to put some more rigor into the training around this space.”
The course work will include seven modules, with classes available through both in-person and online study. “Students will learn about the latest industry trends and how to effectively communicate the value of sustainable, responsible and impact investments,” according to the web site description.
The details are still being finalized, but the plan is for around 60 hours of study, according to Young. That will include, among other topics, the foundations of socially responsible investing; the various approaches to SRI practices, from debt investments to ETFs; an overview of shareholder advocacy and engagement; how to include SRI into portfolio construction for different types of clients; creating investment policies for foundations and pension funds; the risk and ratings metrics available; fiduciary ethics; and regulatory changes and other issues to be aware of.
The plan is for the courses to be up and running by early fall.
The College of Financial Planning provides education and certification for a great many professional designations for financial services professionals—a veritable alphabet soup of designations, such as the prestigious Certified Financial Planner (CFP), along with Chartered Mutual Fund Counselor (CMFC), Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC) and Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist (CRPS).
The bottom line: Impact investing has joined retirement planning as a top concern for advisors and the investors who hire them.
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