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People and Business: Sell spinach, buy beans

CHARLES SCHWAB, the American-owned telephone share-dealing service, has come up with a revolutionary kind of investment, if its bulletin for spring 1999 is anything to go by.

The bulletin includes a registration form for its next private investors conference and exhibition at Birmingham's International Convention Centre on Saturday 15 May, tickets from pounds 10 to pounds 40.

Among other things, the form asks you to tick which type of investor you are: "active", "novice" - or "vegetarian".

I've heard of ethical investing, but never vegetarian investing.

Does this mean you can specify: "Only put my funds into carrots and broccoli, please."?

The answer is more prosaic. Charles Schwab have got their dietary requirements questions mixed up with "type of investor".

It's a nice thought, though. Perhaps some innovative funds marketeer should pick it up.