We use financial investment as a way of creating extra income to pay for services.
Within strict financial rules, we borrow money to put towards careful investments of a capital nature. Within these rules, we may also invest some of our 'surplus cash flow' – that is, when there's more money in our accounts than we need for day-to-day costs, such as when we've received a lot of income.
Money returned from the investments is used to pay back the amounts borrowed, plus any interest payments due. Money that remains is then put towards paying for public services, including services for the most vulnerable, and improved or additional services for the community.
All amounts borrowed must be repaid.
For information on financial rules, go to GOV.UK: local government finance and capital assets.
Principles of investment
We began investing in 2014. Our approach to investment was made more formal in 2017, when it was agreed that:
- the decision to invest does not become more important than existing work – for example, service reform
- the council should consider different approaches to investment – for example, providing a utility and social good
- careful investigation – 'due diligence' – is needed so informed decisions can be made before any new major investment is made
- investments should favour low-risk activity
- investments should favour short-term lending
- investments should favour an inferred 'municipal duty' ahead of private sector markets – this means investments that also benefit society rather than only being for private profit
- councillors must be able to offer judgments on major investments
For more information, go to: