Home > Uncategorized > £75m of public money in tobacco firms – News – Royston Crow

£75m of public money in tobacco firms – News – Royston Crow

£75m of public money in tobacco firms – News – Royston Crow.

 

Here’s  a local news story about tobacco investments by Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire County Councils which between them hold about £75m of tobacco shares.

A spokesman for the CCC fund said:

“A very, very small percentage of holdings in the Cambridgeshire pension fund – 1.9 per cent – is invested in tobacco companies.  We have a responsibility to taxpayers to make sure that money invested attains the maximum level of return within an acceptable degree of risk.  The trustees of the Pension Fund have a single objective, which is to maximise returns to meet the fund’s pension liabilities, and therefore reduce the cost to taxpayers.”

This is a common response, so let’s examine the two points here more closely.  First of all the relatively small proportion of the fund invested in tobacco.  It is typically 1-2% in most of these funds.  If it is such a small proportion, and therefore by implication not worth making a fuss about, then why hang onto these investments?

Secondly, maximising returns.  We know that tobacco costs every area in this country more than tobacco provides in return in taxation.  The cost of ill health and loss of economic output due to tobacco induced diseases such as cancer, COPD and CHD is massive.  Then add in litter clearance, fires, sickness absence etc and you begin to wonder why councils think tobacco is a good investment for their taxpayers.

 

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