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Fund EcoMarket

the sustainable, responsible and ethical investment information hub

Sustainable, responsible and ethical funds explained

SRI Styles Directory

The Fund EcoMarket ‘SRI Styles’ segmentation system is designed to help you find your way around funds in the sustainable, responsible and ethical universe more easily. We group funds according to what they are designed to do –  from an ‘ethical’ or ‘SRI’ perspective, focusing on what it is that the fund considers.

In short, SRI Styles group ‘ethically similar’ options together.

The aim of this is to help users to recognise the key similarities and differences that exist across this market, so that individual investor’s aims can be met more easily.

SRI Styles work on the basis that it is best to keep things simple – and to avoid industry jargon as far as possible… however they are only a starting point.  For investors looking for specific issues or a precise approach on Fund EcoMarket, please use the additional filter options, text and links provided.

 Directory and links to individual ‘Styles’ pages

Funds which focus on a specific issue or theme – often alongside screening criteria and engagement:

  • Sustainability Themed funds focus significantly on (environmental and social) sustainability  issues, opportunities and themes when selecting investments.  These funds tend to have forward looking strategies, favouring companies that show ‘sustainability leadership’, are ‘solutions companies’  or help to facilitate the ‘transition’ to greener lifestyles.  They may also have ‘ethical’ exclusion criteria and encourage positive change through stewardship activity.
  • Sustainability Tilted funds integrate (environmental and social) sustainability considerations into their investment processes favouring companies and typically aim to be ‘overweight’ in companies the managers believe have higher standards and ‘underweight’ (invest less in) companies with lower standards.   They may also have ‘ethical’ exclusion criteria and encourage positive change through stewardship activity. (NEW Classification – under development.)
  • Environmental Themed funds significantly integrate environmental issues into investment strategies.   Their focus is often around longer term environmental and resource related issues, risks and opportunities. May focus on a single issue, industry or resource. May have ‘ethical’ exclusion criteria and encourage positive change through stewardship activity.
  • Social Themed funds focus on ‘people issues’, investing in assets that help to address social challenges such as employment, education, housing and other basic necessities of life. Strategies vary.

Funds which focus on ‘ethical’ or ‘values based’ issues – normally by employing negative and/or positive screening criteria – typically alongside additional ESG issues and engagment:

  • Ethical – Balanced funds have a ‘values based’ ethical focus – typically alongside considering additional ESG (environmental, social and governance) issues.  These funds set out where they aim to invest and avoid – as well as how they make balanced, pragmatic decisions about companies  that have both positive impacts. May employ ‘best in sector’ strategies.  Often complimented by stewardship activity. Strategies vary.
  • EthicalNegative  funds have often extensive ethical exclusion criteria (most commonly armaments and tobacco, but often many other issues also).  These normally include environmental, social and governance related exclusions also.   Strategies vary.  Some funds exclude more than others. Often complimented by stewardship activity.
  • Faith Based funds invest in line with specific religious principles (e.g. Shariah Law)
  • ‘Limited Exclusions’ is used for funds that exclude only a small proportion of an index or allowable universe on the basis of sector involvement or their ESG score (eg only exclude tobacco, or only exclude a small number of companies with poor ESG ratings).

Strategies that may apply to an individual fund or across all fund manager assets:

  • ESG Plus  Funds combine ESG risk mitigation strategies alongside extensive responsible ownership activity and/or exclusion criteria. Strategies vary. See fund entries for further information. This classification may be applied to individual funds or entire asset management companies.
  • Responsible Ownership entries on Fund EcoMarket refer to company wide strategies – listing individual fund management companies by name. For information on ‘responsible ownership’ (Stewardship/voting/engagement) activity that applies to individual funds see the ‘Corporate Activity’ filter area within each fund entry. This strategy often forms a significant part of SRI screened and themed fund strategies as many work to encourage higher standards.

Additional SRI Styles classifications

The following are used for a small number of funds with the aim of reducing the risk of misleading users.  These are not reflected in our  StyleFinder fact find tool – the aim of which is to simplify the advice process.

  • ‘Other’ is used to flag funds that have a policy or strategy that is aligned to the issues covered by sustainable and/or ethical funds but is substantially different from other funds (e.g. single/niche issue).
  • ‘Unclassified’ funds are those we have not been able to classify – typically because information is insufficient.
  • ‘Pending’ indicates funds that are not yet classified.

Fund Strategies vary, sometimes significantly.  Please see individual fund entries for fund specific information.

Fund EcoMarket listings

The Fund EcoMarket database lists all of the regulated, retail, onshore funds (plus a few related entries) that we are aware of.  The listing is therefore (as far as we are aware) ‘whole of market’ for these groups.  A listing on this database does not represent any form of endorsement or indication of quality.

The  ‘Responsible Ownership’ Fund Management Company listings is not whole of market as it is by invitation only.

Fund EcoMarket does not list specialist options such as unlisted funds or individual share or bond issues.

Please contact us if you have found any omissions or would like to request we alter any of the information we hold.

Within each style there are significant differences in strategy.  There are also areas of cross over between the styles.  Our aim is for the Styles to highlight the core issues funds consider (these are explained further in the ‘Policies, Issues and Themes’ filter option. To understand how fund managers deal with the issues, please use the ‘Approaches and Application’ filter.  Please read fund manager supplied text and links in the ‘More Info’ area for further information.

 

This service is provided for information purposes only.  Please speak with a qualified financial adviser for further information.

We do not deal directly with investors and are not authorised to offer advice.

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