Financial and Social Performance of Socially Responsible Investments in the Netherlands


*University of Groningen, Centre for International Banking, Insurance, and Finance (CIBIF), Department of Finance, PO Box 800, 9700 AV Groningen, The Netherlands. Tel: +31 50 363 7064; Fax: +31 50 363 8252; E-mail: L.J.R.Scholtens@RUG.NL


We analyse the performance of socially responsible investments in the Netherlands. It appears that the financial performance of the various types of socially responsible investments differs considerably. We construct a proxy for mutual funds' CSR policies and use information about the environmental and social impact of activities financed by “green” financial institutions. We find preliminary evidence that financial and CSR performance substantially differs per category of financial instrument analysed. In the Netherlands, tax policy significantly affects financial results and the government can affect the CSR impact of some financial instruments too. More coherent and consistent information about CSR is required to establish whether financial and social performance interact.