ESG integration a top priority of investors
Author: Kevin McCreadie
December 14, 2018
In the world of responsible investing, it’s been said that “Who Cares Wins.” That was the title of a landmark report that first coined the term ESG more than two decades ago, unleashing a new way of looking at investing by incorporating environmental, social and governance considerations into the everyday decision making of investors.
Today, there’s never been more evidence that ESG integration is seen as a path to creating long-term value for shareholders while also contributing to a better environment, healthier communities and good corporate governance practices. In fact, in Canada alone, there is now $2.1 trillion in responsible assets under management, representing 42% growth over the past two years and 51% of Canada’s investment industry.*
It’s not surprising then that investors are becoming much more vocal in expressing their desire to know more about responsible investing initiatives and the options available to them. We heard loud and clear from this year’s RIA survey of Canadian investors that they understand the connection between ESG factors and financial results, and are committed to investing in solutions that contribute to building a sustainable future.
For example, while 73% of investors believe climate change will create risks for the global economy within the next 5 years, 66% of those polled would like a portion of their portfolio invested in companies that are providing solutions to climate change and environmental challenges. Moreover, 71% agreed that companies with good ESG practices are better long-term investments.
As a leader in the development of sustainable investing initiatives, AGF is excited to hear that investors are aligned with much of our thinking. It’s not enough, however, to just to create more responsibly-minded investment strategies. As the survey also showed, investors are looking for more guidance on how to align their values with the growing choices that are now available to them on this front.
The ongoing education of investors, therefore, needs to remain a top priority across the investment industry. By upping our collective understanding of the varying aspects of responsible investing, we can drive more meaningful change.
Kevin McCreadie is Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer at AGF Management Ltd. He is a regular contributor to AGF Perspectives.
*2018 Canadian Responsible Investment Trends Report” Responsible Investment Association
The commentaries contained herein are provided as a general source of information based on information available as of November 21, 2019 and should not be considered as investment advice or an offer or solicitations to buy and/or sell securities. Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy in these commentaries at the time of publication however, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. Investors are expected to obtain professional investment advice.
AGF Investments is a group of wholly owned subsidiaries of AGF Management Limited, a Canadian reporting issuer. The subsidiaries included in AGF Investments are AGF Investments Inc. (AGFI), Highstreet Asset Management Inc. (Highstreet), AGF Investments America Inc. (AGFA), AGF Asset Management (Asia) Limited (AGF AM Asia) and AGF International Advisors Company Limited (AGFIA). AGFA is a registered advisor in the U.S. AGFI and Highstreet are registered as portfolio managers across Canadian securities commissions. AGFIA is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland and registered with the Australian Securities & Investments Commission. AGF AM Asia is registered as a portfolio manager in Singapore. The subsidiaries that form AGF Investments manage a variety of mandates comprised of equity, fixed income and balanced assets.
About AGF Management Limited
Founded in 1957, AGF Management Limited (AGF) is an independent and globally diverse asset management firm. AGF brings a disciplined approach to delivering excellence in investment management through its fundamental, quantitative, alternative and high-net-worth businesses focused on providing an exceptional client experience. AGF’s suite of investment solutions extends globally to a wide range of clients, from financial advisors and individual investors to institutional investors including pension plans, corporate plans, sovereign wealth funds and endowments and foundations.
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