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Research

Research and analysis to keep sustainable investors up to-date on a broad range of topics that include trends and developments in sustainable investing and sustainable finance regulatory updates, performance results and considerations, investing through Index funde and actively managed portfolios, asset allocation updates, expenses, ESG ratings and data, company and product news, green, social and sustainable bonds, green bond funds as well as reporting and disclosure practices, to name just a few.

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Research and analysis to keep sustainable investors up to-date on a broad range of topics that include trends and developments in sustainable investing and sustainable finance, regulatory updates, performance results and considerations, investing through index funds and actively managed portfolios, asset allocation updates, expenses, ESG ratings and data, company and product news, green, social and sustainable bonds, green bond funds as well as reporting and disclosure practices, to name just a few.   

A continuously updated Funds Directory is also available to investors.  This is intended to become a comprehensive listing of sustainable mutual funds, ETFs and other investment products along with a description of their sustainable investing approaches as set out in fund prospectuses and related regulatory filings.

Sustainable Investing Monitor-July 1, 2024

The Bottom Line:  Sustainable fund assets expanded modestly, sustainable bond issuance remains strong, ESG relative performance results were positive, but fund launches were still anemic.

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Chart of the Week – July 8, 2024: Focused sustainable MMKT funds are disappearing while sustainable MMKT funds expand

The Bottom Line:  Focused sustainable money market fund assets are disappearing while non-focused sustainable money market funds are expanding along with conventional money fund assets.

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Chart of the Week – July 1, 2024: Highest yielding sustainable investment funds

The Bottom Line:  The top yielding sustainable investment funds, mutual funds and ETFs, recorded an average 12-month yield of 9.3% at the end of May.

Chart of the Week – June 17, 2024: Municipal National Intermediate funds end May in the red

The Bottom Line:  The Municipal National Intermediate funds category, which offers investors a core focused sustainable municipal funds holding option, posts negative results in May.     Notes of Explanation:  For each mutual fund with multiple share classes, only the best performing share class is displayed.  May performance results arrayed in descending order.  Results over 3-year and 5-year intervals are average annual performance results.

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Sustainable Investing Monitor-June 1, 2024

The Bottom Line:  Sustainable fund assets expanded due to market, social bond issuance was strong, ESG relative performance results were positive, but fund launches suffered.

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Largest sustainable investment funds going into 2024

The Bottom Line:  A number of the largest ten sustainable investment funds can each serve as a sustainable investment portfolio’s anchor equity or bond position.Largest sustainable mutual funds and ETFs as of November 30, 2023, with trailing 12-month performance resultsNotes of Explanation:  Total net assets combine all share classes.  For mutual funds, trailing 12-month returns apply to the largest share class.  Sources:  Morningstar Direct, Sustainable Research and Analysis LLC.Largest sustainable mutual funds and ETFs going into 2024 can serve in anchor positions The largest sustainable mutual funds and ETFs going into 2024, based on total net assets as of November 30, 2023, include a diverse group of funds that, with one exception, can each serve as a sustainable investment portfolio’s anchor equity position or, in one other case, a fixed income investment option.     The top 10 funds manage $102.9 billion in assets, accounting for some 31% of the $326.9 billion in sustainable fund assets at the end of November 2023.  They are managed by seven different firms and include domestic equity, one international fund and one fixed income fund.  These funds also consist of index funds and actively managed funds as well as funds that pursue varying fundamental investing and sustainable investing approaches.

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Chart of the Week – June 10, 2024: Limited supply of worthy sustainable small-cap funds

The Bottom Line:  A limited number of worthy focused sustainable small-cap blended investment funds is available to various investors once screened against five key characteristics.

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Chart of the Week – June 3, 2024: Drought in sustainable investment fund formations

The Bottom Line:  The drought in sustainable investment fund launches continued through May, during which there were no new listings of mutual funds or ETFs.         Notes of Explanation: Number of mutual fund launches excludes share class introductions.

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Research

Research and analysis to keep sustainable investors up to-date on a broad range of topics that include trends and developments in sustainable investing and sustainable finance, regulatory updates, performance results and considerations, investing through index funds and actively managed portfolios, asset allocation updates, expenses, ESG ratings and data, company and product news, green, social and sustainable bonds, green bond funds as well as reporting and disclosure practices, to name just a few.

A continuously updated Funds Directory is also available to investors.  This is intended to become a comprehensive listing of sustainable mutual funds, ETFs and other investment products along with a description of their sustainable investing approaches as set out in fund prospectuses and related regulatory filings.

Getting started

Many questions have surfaced in recent years regarding sustainable and ESG investing.  Here, investors and financial intermediaries will find materials that describe the various approaches to sustainable investing and their implementation.  While sustainable investing approaches vary and they have thus far defied universally accepted definitions, many practitioners agree that they fall into the following broad categories:  Values-based investing, investing via exclusions, impact investing, thematic investments and ESG integration.  In conjunction with each of these approaches, investors may also adopt various issuer engagement procedures and proxy voting practices.  That said, sustainable investing approaches will continue to evolve.

In addition to periodic updates regarding sustainable investing and how this form of investing is evolving, investors and financial intermediaries interested in implementing a sustainable investing approach will also find source materials that cover basic investing themes as well as asset allocation tactics.

Inesting ideas

Thoughts and ideas targeting sustainable investing strategies executed through various registered and non-registered sustainable investment funds and products such as mutual funds, Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), Exchange Traded Notes (ETNs), closed-end funds, Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) and Unit Investment Trusts (UITs). Coverage extends to investment management firms as well as fund groups. 

Independent source for sustainable investment management company research, analysis, opinions and sustainable fund disclosure assessments