ESG funds are fast becoming a staple that caters for the appetite of Northern European investors. But in the centre of Europe’s automotive industry, Bavaria, investors are not quite as bothered with sustainability.
Companies listed in the Eurozone score best on Environmental, Social and Governance criteria, according to Morningstar research, with Portugal getting the highest score. On the other end of the scale, two of the BRICS countries get the lowest marks.
The growing popularity of index investing is only just starting to be felt in the world of responsible investing but as the market for plain vanilla trackers becomes increasingly crowded, what does the future hold for ESG passive products?
Three quarters of pension funds in the Netherlands now have an ESG policy, up from just 45% in 2013, according to a study by pensions regulator DNB (De Nederlandsche Bank).
Companies with a sound corporate governance culture have significantly outperformed their poorly governed competitors since the beginning of 2009, according to fresh research by Hermes Investment Management.
Passive investing has made a rapid rise over the past couple of years. When it comes to sustainable investing, however, index-based funds are still relative newcomers.
Some 39% of institutional assets in Europe are invested in sustainable mandates, according to a study commissioned by Union Investment, the German asset manager. The Nordics and the Netherlands are the frontrunners, while Germany and Italy are lagging behind.
The extent to which a company adheres to ESG-criteria does not materially impact stock returns. However, changes in ESG scores can tell you something about future return potential of a stock, according to new research commissioned by NN Investment Partners.
Sweden is a leader in socially responsible investing, so in Stockholm we gathered a group of leading SRI experts, fund buyers and managers to debate the big issues such as balancing ethics and performance, and whether to invest in the best company in ‘unethical’ areas – or avoid the sectors completely.
Three-fifths of European institutional investors expect the rise of passive investment vehicles to have a negative impact on shareholder engagement, reported the latest paper in the Hermes Investment Management Responsible Capitalism survey.