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Your Essential Guide to Sustainable Investing

How to live your values and achieve your financial goals with ESG, SRI, and Impact Investing

Larry E. Swedroe and Samuel C. Adams

Harriman House

Your Essential Guide to Sustainable Investing Download image

ISBN10: 0857199048
ISBN13: 9780857199041


244 Pages



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Sustainable investing is booming. The investment industry is fast approaching a point where one-third of global assets under management are invested with a sustainable objective.

But do sustainable investment products do what investors expect them to do? How can an investor tell if their investments are having the social impact they want? Does that impact come at a financial cost? And how can investors weave their way through the web of confusing acronyms, conflicting agency ratings, and the mass of fund offerings, confident that they can recognize and avoid corporate greenwashing?

Larry Swedroe and Sam Adams cut through the fog and bring clarity on all of this and more—providing investors with a firm plan for truly sustainable investing.

The authors first define sustainable investing, illuminating the differences between ESG, SRI and impact investing, and reveal who is currently investing sustainably and why.

They then move on to a comprehensive review of the academic research. What does the data really say about risk and return in sustainable investing? What performance can you genuinely expect from sustainable investments? And how are today’s sustainable investors using their influence to drive positive changes for society and the environment?

Finally, this book arms you with a practical guide to investing sustainably, including how to effectively choose your asset allocation strategy, and select the managers and funds through which your money can create the change you want to see in the world.

Your Essential Guide to Sustainable Investing is the definitive go-to resource that investors have been waiting for.


Praise for Your Essential Guide to Sustainable Investing

"Demand is booming for mutual funds that specialize in ethical investing—helping you put your money into companies that support the environment, workers, and society in general. But some apparently 'green' funds are merely 'green-washed,' only pretending to invest ethically. How can you find investments that truly reflect your principles? This excellent book will tell you. You'll learn the nuances of social investing as well as discover your likely investment returns. Highly recommended!"—Jane Bryant Quinn, author of How to Make Your Money Last: The Indispensable Retirement Guide

"Sustainable investing is a complex subject. The investing industry, as it always does, has made it even more so. Here is a book that spells out what the data and peer-reviewed academic evidence tell us. The truth is, we simply don’t know whether ESG portfolios will outperform or underperform mainstream portfolios in the future. Ultimately, though, there are far more important things at stake. Adams and Swedroe have produced the go-to guide for anyone who wants to understand the issues involved."—Robin Powell, editor at The Evidence-Based Investor

"Larry Swedroe and his co-author Sam Adams provide an insightful guide for investors interested in the hottest investment today; namely sustainable investing (SI). Their book is not simply a 'this is a wonderful opportunity,' but a sober look at the reality that the plethora of SI funds are not particularly comparable and, in fact, the rating services provide radically different ratings for the same funds. Having set the framework and following up with details on the nature and attributes of the SI market, they conclude with a comprehensive guide on 'How to Invest Sustainably' (and the warning that it will take work). If this is an investment universe you have an interest in entering, Your Essential Guide To Sustainable Investing is indeed an essential book to own and read."—Harold Evensky, founder of Evensky & Katz

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Larry E. Swedroe and Samuel C. Adams

Larry E. Swedroe is the chief research officer for Buckingham Strategic Wealth and Buckingham Strategic Partners. Larry holds an MBA in finance and investments from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in finance from Baruch College. Larry was among the first authors to publish a book that explained the science of investing in layman’s terms, The Only Guide to a Winning Investment Strategy You’ll Ever Need. He has since authored nine more books and co-authored seven books on investing and financial planning. His books have been published in seven languages. Larry is a prolific writer and contributes regularly to,, and

Samuel Adams is CEO and co-founder of Vert Asset Management, a dedicated ESG investment management firm. He has been a featured speaker on sustainable investing at financial advisor conferences in the US, UK, Europe, and Australia. Prior to launching Vert, Sam spent almost 20 years working at Dimensional Fund Advisors. He started Dimensional’s European Financial Advisor Services business and led it for ten years. Sam has a BA in Philosophy from the University of Colorado, Boulder and an MBA in Finance from the University of California, Davis. Sam is an avid mountaineer and cyclist, and is very passionate about the environment.

Larry E. Swedroe

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