Live-streaming video - Live-streaming video offers individuals and brands a direct way to engage and connect. With so many of us working remotely, there’s never been a better t...
Institutional interest in sustainable investing grows in Germany
On average German institutional investors apply sustainable factors to half their assets, but this rises to almost three quarters (73%) for foundations, according to the survey, by Union Investments of 218 large-scale investors managing about €1trn.
Union's analysis also revealed pension funds hold below-average proportions of their assets - between 32% and 34% - in sustainability programmes. By comparison, churches and endowments hold 73%.
Alexander Schindler (pictured), a member of Union Investment's board of managing directors responsible for institutional business, said: "In Germany, these investor groups tend to have a fairly small proportion of sustainable investments compared to other countries.
"In Scandinavia, the UK and the Benelux countries, sustainable investment concepts are predominantly driven by long-term investors such as pension funds."
Schindler expects this trend to spread to Germany as society at large attaches increasing importance to sustainability, and its economic benefits for investors.
Union's report came in the same week analysis by another German asset manager found allocating to portfolios holding companies with above-average environmental, social and governance (ESG) ratings would have added 1.6% a year more to performance over the five years to September 2010.
While German investors are known for their interest in social and environmental dimensions of investing, asset managers inside and beyond Germany have also engaged robustly with German companies this year on governance, notably involving supervisory boards.
Union's Schindler said: "All of the survey's participants - including those who have not invested sustainably so far - assume that sustainability criteria will become more important."
Some 87% overall, and 92% of pension funds, said economic criteria were most closely linked with sustainable asset management. About three quarters of all respondents cited environmental and social criteria as most closely linked. Two thirds said ethical criteria.
Alternative energy was most often named by respondents (82%) as the SRI topic expected to gain importance over 12 months, followed by real estate and natural resources.
Among those already investing sustainably, 71% said they do so mainly to enhance their image. High demand from customers and optimisation of risk management were each cited by about 58%.
However, only 40% said higher expected returns was why to invest along sustainability lines. Among those not doing so, 74% assume it would produce lower returns.
Of respondents considering sustainability criteria, 42% are actively trying to influence companies to apply ESG criteria to management, while around half sustainable investors plan to become more vocal.
Union said: "This seems logical in light of the fact that, of those who are already actively engaged, 74% expect an active dialogue will play a hugely significant role for German investors in future."
Experts from 22 countries will attend the 9th International Meeting on Organic and Sustainable Agriculture, which will be held here f...
Hundreds of stakeholders from across the continent gathered here recently for the Seventh African Development Forum, or ADF VII, to discu...
The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and World Stage Design 2013 are currently seeking proposals for the competition to design a sus...
The University of Maziar, in collaboration with Iranian Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHTO) organize "The...
The Amsterdam College of Mayor and Alderpersons has outlined new plans to increase the pace of improving sustainability in the Dutch cap...
Micro combined heat and power or micro-CHP or mCHP is an extension of the idea of cogeneration to the single/multi family home or small of...
The annual joint conference of the United Nations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), which begins next week in Bonn, Germany, will ...
"China's Top 100 Green Companies", brought forward by the Daonong Centre for Enterprises and the Green Herald Magazine, wh...
“The operating principle for an East Asian community needs to be sustainable development .” The 2011 Asia Future Forum (AFF) wrapped...
The Singapore Sustainability Academy (SSA) has been built to highest energy efficiency and green building standards and will serve as the ...