Archive for October, 2012

UK income stars cut tobacco as regulatory threat emerges

UK income stars cut tobacco as regulatory threat emerges.


Will LA Pension Funds follow suit.  This article says many fund managers are cutting their exposure to tobacco companies.  Sentiment is moving against Big Tobacco as more and more countries begin to meet their Treaty obligations to heavily restrict smoking.

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Russia launches anti-smoking crackdown | Reuters

Russia’s Finance Ministry has previously announced plans to increase the excise duty on tobacco by around 40 percent for 2013 and 2014 and said on Tuesday it plans to hike taxes by 10 percent a year after 2015

via Russia launches anti-smoking crackdown | Reuters.

The Big 4 tobacco companies controlling 90% of the Russian market will be worried by the acceleration of tobacco control in Russia.  The sort of measures we have seen adopted in the UK and many western countries are now being adopted by emerging markets.  While the Big 4 will no doubt keep marketing as long as they can, and fight every regulation, the writing is on the wall.

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MSPs roll up £1m of pension fund in tobacco firms | Herald Scotland

MSPs roll up £1m of pension fund in tobacco firms | Herald Scotland.


Members of the Scottish Parliament are investing their pension funds in tobacco companies through a pooled fund.  A parliament spokesman says the fund complies with the UN Principles for Responsible Investment.  Unfortunately the PRI appears to be in direct conflict with the UN Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the latter making it crystal clear that tobacco and the term ‘responsible investment’ are incompatible.

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Australia pension fund reviewing tobacco stake

Australia pension fund reviewing tobacco stake.


Welcome news from Australia where one of the national state pension funds is to review its holdings in tobacco companies following the introduction of plain packs.
The review is to consider the costs and implications of exclusion.  The Fund has been under pressure to act  as many consider investments in tobacco to be inconsistent with public values in Australia which is a world leader in tobacco control.

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The Courier – City council reviews pension fund after cigarette investment complaints

The Courier – City council reviews pension fund after cigarette investment complaints.


Dundee City Council is reviewing pension fund investment in tobacco companies.

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Pension fund has shares in tobacco, drink firms – Pensions, Personal Finance –

Pension fund has shares in tobacco, drink firms – Pensions, Personal Finance –

It seems Ireland’s national pension fund also has tobacco investments.

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Money in tobacco From Malvern Gazette

Money in tobacco From Malvern Gazette.

Strong words from opposition Councillors in Worcestershire, as the majority Conservative party decided to maintain tobacco investments.  See my comment below the article, where I challenge the slippery slope arguments, that imply that if you exclude tobacco, then where so you stop – alcohol, fast food, cars etc.

Tobacco is the only consumer product that kills tens of thousands of people in the UK, when used exactly as intended by the manufacturers.  A lifelong smoker has a 50% chance of being killed by smoking, and of those 50% about half will die in middle age.  Tobacco is in a completely different class to other consumer products, which is why the only international public health treaty is all about tobacco.

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