Swedbank

Swedbank is a Swedish financial institution serving 8 million private customers and over 600,000 corporate and institutional customers. Swedbank also operates in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.[i]

Swedbank’s Position Paper on Defence Equipment states: “Swedbank applies a zero tolerance principle for financial services to customers belonging to a Group that is manufacturing, modernising, selling or buying nuclear weapons.”[ii] If a company decides to get involved in nuclear weapons, Swedbank does not terminate existing loan contracts. However, a renewal of loans falls under the restrictions of the Position Paper and is not allowed.[iii] Swedbank Robur, Swedbank’s asset manager, has implemented a policy that prohibits investment in nuclear weapon producers (developing, manufacturing, modernizing, maintaining, selling or buying nuclear weapons).[iv]

Swedbank also divests from investment holdings in nuclear weapon producers.[v] The policy applies to all assets managed, except for investments made on behalf of third parties.[vi] Swedbank Robur has decided to also exclude nuclear weapon producers from index funds and has therefore applied for a new fund prospectus for the index funds through the authorities (Finansinspektionen).[vii] Swedbank Robur mainly works with internal asset managers. External managers are informed of Swedbanks policies but not systematically and they are not forced to implement them.[viii]

Swedbank Robur’s published exclusion list contains 15 companies for involvement with nuclear weapons: Airbus; Boeing; Finmeccanica; Fluor; Honeywell International; Babcock International; Babcock & Wilcox; GenCorp[ix]; Jacobs Engineering; Motovilikhinskiye Zavody; Northrop Grumman; Raytheon; Safran; Serco and United Technologies.[x] The list is based on information from external research providers Global Engagement Services (GES) and Ethix SRI Advisors.[xi]

 We commend Swedbank for adopting a public policy on nuclear weapons. We welcome the decision by Swedbank to divest from investment holdings in nuclear weapon producers and to start excluding nuclear weapon producers from index funds. We recommend Swedbank apply its policy to all financial products including third party investments and external asset managers, and terminate existing loan contracts with nuclear weapon producers. We look forward to engaging with Swedbank, so a strong and comprehensively applied policy may be listed in the Hall of Fame in a future update of this report.
 

Swedbank's policy on nuclear weapons is leaky. Tell them to fix it!

Congratulations Swedbank!

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Click on “Read the Petition” if you want to modify the text!

I saw on www.dontbankonthebomb.com that you have a policy limiting investments in nuclear weapons. I think it’s really important that you share my concern about these weapons, and I appreciate that there is a public policy.

However, the policy does have some loopholes and the Don’t Bank on the Bomb report shows how you still might invest in nuclear weapons producers. I am concerned about this, because Swedbank also invests my money and I don’t want to be associated in any way with the production of these inhumane weapons.

It would be great if Swedbank made the following changes to make the policy airtight:
• Apply the policy to all financial products including third party investments and external asset managers;
• Terminate existing loan contracts with nuclear weapon producers.

With kind regards,

Or :

Tweet: Even @Swedbank knows investing in #nuclear weapons should be restricted. Strengthen the policy & say #goodbyenukes! http://ctt.ec/1_9ff+

 

Website: Twitter: Facebook:
https://www.swedbank.com/ @Swedbank https://www.facebook.com/swedbanksverige

 

[i]           Swedbank, “About Swedbank”, website Swedbank (http://www.swedbank.com/about-swedbank/index.htm), viewed 8 May 2015.

[ii]           Swedbank, “Position Paper – Defence Equipment”, website Swedbank (http://www.swedbank.com/corporate-sustainability/human-rights/position-on-defence-equipment/index.htm), viewed 8 May 2015.

[iii]          Swedbank, written response to Profundo dated 27 May 2014.

[iv]          Swedbank, “Annual Report 2014”, p.177, available at https://www.swedbank.com/idc/groups/public/@i/@sbg/@gs/@ir/documents/financial/cid_1656305.pdf, viewed 8 May 2015; Swedbank, written response to PAX dated 30 April 2015.

[v]           Swedbank, written response to Profundo dated 27 May 2014.

[vi]          Swedbank, “Position Paper – Defence Equipment”, website Swedbank (http://www.swedbank.com/corporate-sustainability/human-rights/position-on-defence-equipment/index.htm), viewed 8 May 2015.

[vii]          Swedbank, written response to PAX dated 30 April 2015.

[viii]         Swedbank Robur, written response to Profundo dated 27 May 2014.

[ix]          GenCorp renamed itself in 2015 and is now known as Aerojet Rocketdyne.

[x]           Swedbank Robur, “Uteslutna bolag”, November 2014, available at http://www.swedbankrobur.se/idc/groups/public/@i/@sc/@all/@robur/documents/article/cid_1313966.pdf, viewed 8 May 2015.

[xi]          Swedbank Robur, written response to Profundo dated 27 May 2014.

Who divests?

Policy Research

The financial institutions presented all have publicly available policies – or summaries thereof – excluding investments in nuclear weapons producing companies. Since the banking group usually sets the investment policy and since the group directly or indirectly supervises its subsidiaries, we research the group policy only.

The Hall of Fame section highlights financial institutions that have comprehensive policies preventing investments in nuclear weapon producers. These policies meet all of the criteria.
The Runners-Up provides information on existing policies and makes recommendations for how to strengthen them.

Criteria:

Hall of Fame finanical institution policies policy must:

1. Exclude all nuclear weapon associated companies

The policy excludes:

  • whole companies not only nuclear weapons related projects
  • companies associated with nuclear weapons including through joint ventures
  • companies regardless of their country of origin
  • companies regardless their country of operation

2. Exclude all nuclear weapon associated activities

The policy excludes companies associated with:

  • development, testing, production, maintenance or trade of nuclear weapons related technology, parts, products or services, and;
  • delivery systems such as missiles, that are specifically developed for nuclear tasks. This includes technology that is designed for ‘dual use’ (military and civilian) but excludes technology that is not designed for, but can be used in nuclear warfare. It does not include delivery platforms such as bombers and submarines.

3. Apply to all the institution’s products and services

The institution applies the policy:

  • for the entire Group, including subsidiaries
  • in all markets
  • to all asset management classes – passive and active, internal and external.
  • to all existing and future investments.

The financial institutions in the Hall of Fame have not engaged in any financial relationships with any of the nuclear weapon associated companies listed in this report. The policies of over 80 financial institutions were analysed for this report.

Runners-Up are financial institutions whose nuclear weapons policy does not meet all of the above criteria .

Methodology

To identify financial institutions with a policy on nuclear weapons, we research a variety of sources: NGO reports, screening-agency information, financial institution reports and websites, information from campaigners and other public sources. For practical reasons, the scope of this report is limited to those financial institutions that have an investment policy or a summary of that policy in English. The list of institutions in the Hall of Fame is not exhaustive. We welcome additions from those able to provide them.

For the purposes of this report, nuclear weapon producers are defined as companies that produce key components to test, develop, maintain, modernise and deploy nuclear weapons. There are countless companies involved in the broad nuclear weapons complex, and this report only details those most heavily involved in the production and maintenance of nuclear warheads and their delivery systems (such as missiles and launch tubes). The report does not include companies involved in the production of delivery platforms (such as nuclear capable bombers and submarines).

In advance of this report, all financial institutions were asked to fill in a standardised questionnaire with detailed questions on the scope and content of their policies. Financial institutions that did not respond are not included. Of the thirteen financial institutions listed in the Hall of Fame, six publish a list of companies that they exclude from their investment universe. The companies excluded are listed in the profiles of the financial institutions as a resource. Three other financial institutions in the Hall of Fame work with an inclusion list rather than an exclusion list. The remaining four do not make their lists public.

Each financial institution profile in the Hall of Fame includes a brief description of the institution, a summary of key policy elements, and the exclusion list if applicable. We researched investments in companies on our producers list for each of the financial institutions listed in the Hall of Fame. None of the financial institutions listed in the Hall of Fame invest in any of the 26 identified nuclear weapon producers.