ESG Investor’s weekly round-up of new funds designed to meet sustainable investing criteria.
M&G Investments has launched a range of retail multi-asset funds combing adherence of ESG standards, impact investment and volatility management. The range features three individual funds suiting different risk tolerances: cautious, balanced and growth. Aiming to deliver attractive total returns while also contributing positively to climate and society, the funds will be supported by analysis developed by M&G’s stewardship and sustainability team, alongside external providers. “Many customers want their long–term savings to produce good financial returns and make a positive contribution to the planet,” said Maria Municchi, Fund Manager of the M&G Sustainable Multi Asset range.
Robeco has announces the launch of two climate-focused fixed income strategies: RobecoSAM Climate Global Credits and RobecoSAM Climate Global Bonds. These are the first global fixed income strategies to be fully compliant with the EU benchmark for Paris-aligned investment, measured against climate indices developed by Robeco and Solactive. “Launching these strategies and making them available to our clients is a clear example of our strong conviction that investing is not only about creating wealth but also about contributing to wellbeing,” said Victor Verberk, CIO of Fixed Income and Sustainability at Robeco.
Morgan Stanley Investment Management has launched the MS UK Sustainable Fixed Income Opportunities Fund, combining sustainability with an active, flexible approach to investing. The portfolio will allocate capital across a variety of fixed income asset classes within both developed and emerging markets, using a top-down selection process in order to reduce material risk, carbon intensity and negative outcomes. “We actively seek to identify holdings with a long-term competitive advantage by relying on a process that includes ESG integration, social and environmental impact assessment, and active engagement,” said Navindu Katugampola, Head of Sustainable Investing for Fixed Income and Liquidity at Morgan Stanley IM.
JP Morgan Asset Management (JPMAM) has launched its first sustainable OEIC, the JPM Emerging markets Equity Sustainable Fund. Following the launch of JPMorgan Funds – Emerging Markets Equity Sustainable Fund in 2019, the fund will exclude unsustainable sectors, including weapons and tobacco. JPMAM also launched the JPMorgan Carbon Transition US Equity ETF (JCTR) which will provide broader US equity exposure, tracking the JPMorgan Asset Management Carbon Transition US Equity Index.
Two new infrastructure debt funds have been announced by BNP Paribas Asset Management (BNPP AM): the BNP Paribas European Infrastructure Debt Fund II and the BNP Paribas European Junior Infrastructure Debt Fund I. Both funds will follow a ESG policy aligned with analysis provided by BNPP AM’s Sustainability Centre. Debt Fund I will invest in European non-investment grade infrastructure offering stable cash flows, and will target €300-500 million. Debt Fund II will target €500 million.
Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM) has launched a fixed income ETF range, comprising of five funds which will be listed on the London Stock Exchange. The new range features a higher allocation to green bonds and will employ LGIM’s “liquidity-aware approach”, which includes increased minimum assurance thresholds relative to traditional benchmarks. Two of the funds, L&G ESG Emerging Markets Government Bond UCITS ETF and the L&G ESG China Bond UCITS ETF, will also be listed on the Deutsche Börse and the Borsa Italiana.
A new sustainability–focused strategy has been announced by Lyxor Asset Management Group in partnership with Bridgewater Associates LP. The strategy will leverage Bridgewater’s systematic research process to assess and select assets aligned to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, utilising an ‘all weather’ asset location framework. “Using the same research process that we have developed over the last forty years, we have built a systematic process to engineer both the sustainability and financial characteristics of portfolios. We are excited to continue to collaborate with Lyxor in meeting the challenges of global investors,” said Brian Kreiter, Bridgewater CIO.
UOB Venture Management (UOBVM), the private equity arm of UOB, has collaborated with Credit Suisse and raised more than US$60 million for its Asia Impact Investment Fund II (AIIF II). The fund is committed to improving the wellbeing and livelihoods of low-income communities in Southeast Asia and China through its investments. Money raised is expected to exceed a target of US$100 million when final closing occurs next year. The fund will invest in private, high growth companies across sectors such as agriculture, healthcare and logistics, ranging from US$1-15 million. As part of their ongoing collaboration, Credit Suisse will to act as the impact adviser to UOBVM. “The success of the AIIF I and the momentum of the AIIF II to-date reflects investors ’growing emphasis on sustainability,” said Seah Kian Wee, CEO of UOBVM.