Impact and Criticism, hand in hand
AP7, the largest pension fund in Sweden, is transferring €290 million from fossil stocks it blacklisted last year to SDG-aligned impact stocks through mandates it has awarded to KBI Global Investors and Impax Asset Management. Storebrand CEO Jan Erik Saugestad is impressed with the growth of Storebrand’s fossil free funds, launched within the last two years, suggesting he has never seen a similar rate of growth.
A white paper from Danske bank & Invesco suggests there is a lack of authenticity in the degree of companies’ claims of ESG integration, which correlates with a report from the Financial Times that 1 in 10 UN PRI signatories don’t take their commitment seriously, pending the publication of an annual audit that will put said signatories on notice.
In an interview with Mary Jane McQuillen, at Legg Mason‘s US-based asset management affiliate ClearBridge we learned how a sustainability-focused team can survive multiple rounds of M&A thanks to performance. McQuillen shares insights into her firm’s investment process and tells us how sustainability is deeply embedded in her team’s culture
Meanwhile, in Stockholm we also met with Shawn Westcott from Swiss-based BlueOrchard, one of the few funds offering exposure to micro finance. Since a few weeks only, BlueOrchard’s Microfinance fund has been authorised for marketing in Sweden by the Swedish FSA (NordSIP).
Heard on E-Street
26 banks from around the world are developing a Principles for Responsible Banking initiative to align the banking sector with the Paris Agreement and UN SDGs. November is the target date for launch (Sustainabonds). Merrill Lynch is estimating that $600 billion of green bonds from Asian issuers will be available over the next 5 years (IPE). Nao Sustainable Asset Management, the first Spanish manager to manage all funds according to ESG criteria, has been authorized by the Spanish National Securities Market Commission.
Question of the Week
How can America save the world again? It’s simple, really.
Famous Last Words
“I always focus on irresponsible investors and criminals. And I always communicated in their tribal language, so I only showed them self-interest, opportunity and money flows” –TBLI chairman Robert Rubinstein, characteristically joking but serious, about dealing with investors who haven’t smelled the coffee yet.
Carrots and sticks. Happy weekend,
Your NordSIP team
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