Morgan Stanley
  • Women Financial Advisor Forum
  • Jul 29, 2020

The Two "M" Words: Money and Millennials - Impact Investing

Morgan Stanley Financial Advisor Lori Sackler looks at how the Millennial generation is becoming a driving force of impact investing in the current investment world.

I recently completed a course of study to receive a special designation at the firm, Family Wealth Director.  During an intense six months, I diligently studied the complicated world of highly affluent families and the complex personal and financial challenges they face. One issue that is of considerable concern is successfully transmitting family values to a younger generation and integrating the next generation into the wealth strategy and goals of the family.

The millennial generation, now the largest and most educated segment in the work force, according to Pew Research, is currently one of the driving forces in a growing area in the investment world, what Morgan Stanley refers to as "impact investing.” They are more focused on sustainability in their consumer behavior than the overall investor population, which is carrying over to their investment choices.   

Women are two times more likely than male investors to desire to invest in companies that generate positive environmental and social impact, according to one Morgan Stanley study. Together, these two demographics, millennials and women, represent a large percentage of the current population seeking investments that align their personal values with their investment strategies, combining doing good with doing well financially, and they are influencing the way other members of the family invest and deliver on their philanthropic goals. Although research shows that 54%¹ of people believe that there is a tradeoff between sustainable investing and financial returns, this belief is a myth and many millennials understand this.  

This special interest of the millennials represents a terrific opportunity for families to connect with them in the context of their philanthropy and strategic investments. Parents and senior members of the family who are eager to educate and integrate their children and grandchildren can invite them to learn more about the family portfolio of investments and philanthropy, while making a meaningful contribution in ideas and strategies in both areas. And it provides a perfect window to engage them in the family discussions around mission and goals.

They can educate the “elders” on the different types, whether it be thematic investing, focusing on themes such as sustainable water, low carbon, clean energy, women, etc. or values based investing, seeking to restrict exposure to specific objectionable industries and companies or environmental, social and governance (ESG) integration, choosing investments based on the environment, social and governance criteria, it is an opportunity to engage in my favorite topic, the "the Money talk."

Think about it: you give them a seat at the table to educate and inform you on options for "impact investing" and you ultimately over time, see them taking on a bigger role in contributing to the larger family wealth plan. 

1 Source: Morgan Stanley Wealth Management https://www.morganstanley.com/pub/content/dam/msdotcom/infographics/sustainable-investing/Sustainable_Signals_Individual_Investor_White_Paper_Final.pdf

About Lori Sackler

Lori has designed her team practice to help clients keep up with the pace of change in their lives, have time to reflect and satisfy security, lifestyle and legacy concerns. With her team and the professionals at Morgan Stanley, she acts as a personal CFO for her clients. The Sackler Group chooses to work with a limited number of clients for whom they can have a meaningful impact.

Lori has the distinction of holding three designations: CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM, CERTIFIED INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT ANALYST®, and FAMILY WEALTH DIRECTOR. An established thought leader, Lori has published numerous articles and books, including “The M Word: The Money Talk Every Family Needs to Have” and “The M Word Journal: How to Have the Money Talk.” She also created and hosted a popular radio program in New York City.

Lori earned her BA with Distinction from the University of Michigan and holds an MS in Marketing and Finance from the University of Texas. She is also an accredited (non-practicing) CPA and is a member of the NJ Society of Certified Public Accountants. Morgan Stanley honored Lori with appointments to the exclusive Regional and National Financial Advisor Councils, and named her an Alternative Investments Director. In 2020 and 2017, Forbes Magazine named Lori one of the Top 200 Women Financial Advisors in the U.S. in 2017, 2018 and 2020, and chose her as one of the Best-in-State Wealth Advisors in the U.S. in 2018.*

* The criteria for these awards do not include factors relating to investment performance. Neither Morgan Stanley Smith Barney nor its Financial Advisors pay a fee in exchange for the rating.