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Americans See Environment as Alternative Source for Economic Growth
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February 08, 2010

Americans See Environment as Alternative Source for Economic Growth

By Anamika Singh
TMCnet Contributor

Allianz Global Investors, a global investment company, in its third-annual survey on environmental investing, says that Americans are hopeful that the environment will help revive the struggling economy.
According to the survey, 73 percent investors think that enacting policies to promote “green” practices and technologies will have a positive impact on economic growth. Also, 57 percent believe that the recent emphasis to create “green” jobs will help revive the economy.

“It’s clear to me that government investment in the environment will be an important engine for economic renewal in the United States,” explains Bozena Jankowska, head of the RCM Sustainability Research Team and lead portfolio manager of the Allianz RCM Global EcoTrends Fund.
“During his State of the Union address last week, President Obama stated ‘The nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy, and America must be that nation.’ This sentiment signals unwavering support which could represent a very significant opportunity for investors,” added Jankowska.
The poll of 1,000 adults examined investors’ attitudes toward the environment as an investment opportunity. It was conducted via the Internet between Dec. 28, 2009 and Jan. 12, 2010 by GfK Roper Public Affairs & Media, a division of GfK Custom Research North America.
Participants were required to have primary or shared responsibility for investment decisions in households with financial assets of at least $100,000. The sample was weighted to match the characteristics of the total online population.
According to the survey, investors view the environmental technology sector as a “buy” with 63 percent classifying the environment as the most important investment opportunity of the 11 categories surveyed. Further, there has been a 70 percent increase from 2007 to 2009 in the number of investors who say they have already made investments in companies that are capitalizing on environmental trends.
“Following the biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression, it is striking that investors, as identified by our survey, are still looking to their financial advisors to bring them interesting investment opportunities, and environmental technology is clearly at the top of the list,” states Brian Gaffney, CEO of Allianz Global Investors Distributors. “Investors realize the potential impact that green investment can have on the economy and they want to capitalize on the opportunity.”
In the Allianz Global Investors 2008 environmental investing survey, 78 percent of investors said they were likely to see more policies to promote business investment in new environmental technologies in the first year of the Obama administration.
Despite the increase in investor optimism about environmental technology, several misperceptions remain which may be preventing investors from jumping in.

Anamika Singh is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Anamika's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Erin Harrison

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