How the Future of Impact Investing Will Affect Investors

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By Marguerita Cheng

In his keynote address at a 2013 G8 Conference , British Prime Minister David Cameron voiced his support for impact investing, believing that European governments should do more to support socially-responsible investments.

The World Economic Forum has predicted the impact investment market will grow to $500 billion by 2020. Other analysts place the figure closer to $1 trillion. Despite all the enthusiasm surrounding impact investing, some financial advisors remain uninformed. According to a CFA Institute report, 66% of advisors admitted to being unfamiliar with the practice. The continued growth of impact investing will depend on educating financial advisors and investors.

A major reason for this expected growth is the impending transfer of wealth from parents to their children. Millennials and Generation Xers stand to inherit between $30 and $40 trillion dollars from the baby boomer generation. The magnitude of this wealth transfer is unmatched by previous generations. Beyond simply the size of the inheritance, Millennials have different priorities than the generations before them. Younger investors seek investments that yield a social return, as well as a financial one.