German Catholic bank 'regrets' birth control pills

3rd August 2009, Comments 0 comments

A German Roman Catholic bank expresses regrets for investing EUR 160,000 worth of artificial birth control.

Berlin -- A German Roman Catholic bank expressed regrets Sunday for making investments "not in keeping with the institution's high ethical standards" after placing money in arms and contraceptives.

Pax Bank (Peace Bank) said it would rectify the "errors" after newsweekly Der Spiegel discovered that the bank had bought about EUR 160,000 worth of stock in US birth control pill manufacturer Wyeth.

A papal encyclical dating from 1968 condemns the use of artificial birth control, a stance fervently upheld by Pope Benedict XVI.

In March, the bank investment fund also put nearly EUR 580,000 in the stock of arms industry giant BAE systems, which builds nuclear submarines and fighter jets, as well as some 870,000 in tobacco companies, Spiegel said.

Pax Bank advertises ethical investment funds that explicitly shun defence contractors, cigarette companies and other firms that do not respect the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

"We regret this and will rectify the mistakes immediately on Monday without negative consequences for our clients," Pax Bank said in a statement in which it thanked Der Spiegel for uncovering the dubious investments.

"Unfortunately in a few internal reviews, the critical investments in question were overlooked. We deeply regret this."

AFP / Expatica

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