Below is a selection of our publications


Dirty Profits 9: How much Pain for Corporate Gain?

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In the ninth issue of the Dirty Profits report series, Facing Finance looks at financial institutions that invest in mining companies that violate the rights of Indigenous Peoples, lend to European pesticide manufacturers that sell their toxic products to countries with less stringent standards, and facilitate the placement of bonds for defense contractors that profit from the war in Yemen. In short, the Dirty Profits report “How much Pain for Corporate Gain?” looks at companies that commit human rights abuses and their financiers.



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Fair Anlegen & Stiften: Ein Leitfaden für gemeinnützige Stiftungen und eine sozial-ökologische Geldanlage

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As part of our “Fair Anlegen & Stiften” project, we have published a guide to charitable endowment and social-ecological investment. This includes information on the importance of sustainable and transparent investment guidelines as well as a corresponding evaluation of the 38 German foundations with the largest capital.




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Dirty Profits 8: Plastic Profits – Disposable plastics, indispensable planet


Our planet is sinking more and more into a thicker layer of plastic that covers coasts, fields and cities and does not stop even at the most remote places. In the eighth edition of the Dirty Profits report, we look at global plastic pollution caused by corporations and the responsibility of European banks. It is high time that plastic companies and their financiers reject single-use plastic!



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Zeit für ein Clean-Up! Sag Nein zu Plastik auf Konto und Depot


What do banks have to do with global plastic pollution? One thing is clear: It’s not just plastic credit cards. Banks lend to companies involved at all points in the plastic lifecycle – from oil extraction to consumption – or profit via investments. In this poster, we highlight which banks are profiting from the single-use plastic business and which ones have set out on a path toward a more environmentally sustainable future.





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Deutsche Pensionskassen – bereit für nachhaltige Geldanlage? Eine Bestandsaufnahme. 


For the United Nations, the insurance industry plays an important role in promoting sustainable economic and social development worldwide. But a new study by the NGO Facing Finance shows that German providers of occupational pensions are not living up to this role. It attests that the largest German pension funds, which manage or invest a total of around 100 billion euros, have in part significant deficits with regard to sustainability guidelines for investment decisions concerning the contributions of the insured.



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Anspruch und Wirklichkeit: Die Nachhaltigen Investitionen des Allianz-Konzerns

Germany’s leading insurer invests in a number of controversial companies through its subsidiary Allianz Global Investors. How do such investments fit in with Allianz’s self-image?





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Dirty Profits 7: Out of Control: Irresponsible weapons transfers and future weapons systems


The Dirty Profits Report 7 highlights the ten European banks with some of the highest investments in 11 global defense companies that have exported arms to unstable and crisis-ridden countries in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region and countries involved in the war in Yemen since 2015.




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Made in Cambodia – Textile Lieferketten und die Verantwortung der Investoren


In the study Made in Cambodia, Facing Finance and SÜDWIND link investments in textile companies with labor rights violations in the Global South. Using Cambodia as an example, the authors show that reliable information on the implementation of labor rights standards in textile factories is available. Investors can use the available data to meet their responsibilities and demand better working conditions for workers.




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Dirty Profits 6: Mining and Extractive Companies – Promises and Progress 


The global extractive industry is implicated in some of the worst labor, environmental and human rights abuses. The rights of communities, farmers, and indigenous peoples are trampled in the pursuit of ever more extraction. In the Dirty Profits 6 report, Facing Finance shows how extractive companies have dealt with the human rights and environmental violations highlighted in previous reports since 2012, and how selected European banks have responded to these violations over time in providing finance.



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Dirty Profits: Unser Geld für Rüstungsexporte in Kriegs- und Krisengebiete

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Unimpressed by death, flight and displacement in war zones, German banks and investors have pumped large sums of money into arms companies over the past three years, which are massively arming the Middle East and fueling the war in Yemen in particular. This is the conclusion of the study “Dirty Profits – Our Money for Arms Exports to War and Crisis Areas” by the two human rights organizations Facing Finance and urgewald.



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Neue Technologien und alte Probleme? Faire Rohstoffe für grüne Technologien und was Investoren dafür tun müssen


Green technologies form the basis for achieving the goal of limiting global warming to below two degrees Celsius. However, low-carbon technologies require a large number of raw materials, the extraction of which is often accompanied by social and environmental problems. Banks in particular have an important role to play in this regard against the backdrop of the recommendations of the EU Action Plan on Financing Sustainable Growth. However, the study shows that the majority of German banks have so far not taken responsibility for sustainable supply chains, even though they are investing heavily in green technologies.



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Wenn der Schein trügt: Fonds im Angebot der Kirchenbanken und deren Investitionen in Rohstoffunternehmen


Almost all funds offered by church banks to their private and institutional customers advertise that they are sustainable and base their investments on Christian values. The banks invoke social and ecological criteria to ensure that investments in controversial companies are avoided. This factsheet examines whether these criteria are sufficient to exclude commodity companies that repeatedly attract attention for their lack of sustainability and violations of norms.



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Background information on the investigation of the church banks

Statement Bank im Bistum Essen

Statement Bank für Kirche und Caritas

Statement Evangelischen Bank

Statement by Union Investment on behalf of the church banks

Summary of statements received


Dirty Profits 5: Report on Companies and Financial Institutions Benefiting from Human Rights Violations and Environmental Destruction

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For the fifth time, Facing Finance and partner organizations from around the world document corporate violations of social and environmental standards and laws in the Dirty Profits Report. The authors show that banks, insurance companies and their clients still too often profit from human rights violations, environmental destruction and corruption by financing or participating in controversial companies.


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Response HSBC

Response BNP Paribas

Rauchfrei investieren: Warum Banken das tödliche Geschäft mit dem Tabak beenden sollten


The consumption of tobacco products is known to pose a health risk. But the tobacco industry not only poses a serious health risk, it also has a negative impact on the environment and human rights. Deforestation and the use of child labor play a role in the growing, harvesting and processing of tobacco. The high returns of the tobacco industry have always attracted financial institutions such as banks, insurance companies, pension funds and asset managers who invest heavily in and/or finance tobacco. In this way, they profit from the tobacco industry’s harmful business model.



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Fragwürdige Unternehmenstätigkeiten des Schweizer Bergbauriesen Glencore und die Verantwortung deutscher Banken


The study by Facing Finance and MISEREOR together with the Latin American network Red Sombra Observadores de Glencore analyzes the relations of German banks with the controversial mining group Glencore. According to the study, German banks have provided almost 8 billion euros to the Swiss commodities group Glencore since 2013, although the company has been accused of serious violations of social and environmental standards in numerous cases.



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Study of the latinamerican network Red Sombra (Englisch)

Alles im grünen Bereich? Klima- und Umweltschutz auf dem Abstellgleis deutscher Banken

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Germany is regarded internationally as one of the pioneers in environmental and climate protection. A policy that German companies and financial service providers obviously do not support, as they continue to contribute to environmental pollution and climate change or profit from business models that are harmful to the climate and the environment. For this publication, therefore, the five largest German banks were examined with regard to their involvement in exemplary cases of environmental and climate damage. The mining of precious metals, the generation of coal-fired power and cement production are just a few examples of how the environment is being damaged and climate change exacerbated.


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Background information on the Freeport-McMoRan case (mining)

Background information on the PetroVietnam case (coal-fired power plant)

Background information on the Indocement case (cement mining and production)

Wie fair ist meine Riester-Rente? Für eine sozial und ökologisch orientierte Altersversorge


In this consumer brochure one can read how the German state looks the other way when it comes to social or ecological criteria in retirement provision: providers meet their duty to provide information if they admit once a year that they do not take any such criteria into account. As a result, only a few Riester products take such criteria into account. Fund-linked products also invest contributions in investment funds that are also free in their investment strategy and have stakes in controversial companies.



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Dirty Profits 4


The fourth edition of the Dirty Profits Report proves once again that voluntary commitments by companies and banks are not suitable for adequately preventing conflicts with social and ecological standards at the expense of people and the environment. 17 authors from 10 countries report on 50 cases of human rights violations, corruption, exploitation and environmental and climate destruction – for which 20 globally active companies and their financial service providers are responsible.



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Die Waffen meiner Bank

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In the consumer brochure “The Weapons of My Bank”, Facing Finance and urgewald examine German banks and their financial relationships with the five most important global and national arms companies over a three-year period. The brochure also compares bank policies on the arms sector and analyzes arms investments by the most common funds of German savers.



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Geld oder Leben

Geld oder Leben


Global learning has now also become an integral part of Facing Finance’s work. We have developed a workshop concept that addresses the role of the German and international financial industry in the violation of human rights and the destruction of the environment worldwide, and is aimed at schools. The accompanying booklet explains the most important elements of the financial market and its players.



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Summary of the Workshop

Other materials (German):

Event notice: Dialogue forum at the D-Bank

Description of roles

Description of tasks for the PR departments of companies and organizations

Lots for role selection


Statement by Plenneton for the Dialogue Forum


Dirty Profits 3: Report on Companies and Financial Institutions Benefiting from Violations of Human Rights


The Dirty Profits Report 3, a civil society cooperation project by more than 30 authors from 10 countries, documents violations of international norms and standards by 25 companies. The companies selected are those that are on investors’ exclusion lists, are the subject of legal proceedings, violate (inter)national law, or have been the subject of massive accusations by the media and civil society. The authors examine how these were supported by leading European financial institutions.



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Dirty Profits 2: Report on Companies and Financial Institutions Benefiting from Violations of Human Rights 


The second edition of the Dirty Profits Report shows that corruption, exploitation, environmental destruction and human rights violations continue to be part of the business model of global companies. Based on financial research by Profundo, the authors also analyze how European financial institutions financially support the business of these companies. In order to be able to realize planned projects, even large companies are dependent on the financial backing of financial institutions.



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More information (incl. press release, financial data and data on the taxation of controversial companies)

Response Glencore

dirty profits exposed – the report


dirty profits exposed – a report by Ilham Rawoot and Victoria Schneider, 2013

Facing Finance’s latest project brings the Dirty Profits Report to life. “dirty profits exposed” accompanies three journalists Ilham Rawoot, Victoria Schneider and Katrin Kraemer on their journey through Africa to uncover the long-term consequences of the mining industry on the daily lives of the people living there and on the environment.



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Mit den Waffen einer Bank


When Deutsche Bank signed the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment in 2008, it published its so-called “no-go policy” for the first time, stating not to be involved in any transactions involving anti-personnel mines, cluster bombs or ABC weapons. But this tough claim is diametrically opposed by the bank’s transactions. This is confirmed by the latest study by Facing Finance and urgewald.



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Dirty Profits 1: Report on Companies and Financial Institutions Benefiting from Violations of Human Rights


The first Dirty Profits report, published on Human Rights Day, reveals the links between financial institutions and companies that massively violate social norms and standards. In terms of sustainability, banks and insurance companies are still at the very beginning, say the authors of the alliance Facing Finance.



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Financial data (Profundo)

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