Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing is growing in popularity, but for many asset managers, this a new and enigmatic approach. Trillium Asset Management (Trillium) is among the oldest investment advisory firms exclusively focused on sustainable, responsible, and impact investing with 37 years of experience. The Global Equity Fund celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2019. Along with our experience, we believe the Global Equity Fund stands out in the saturated ESG investing market for a few reasons.
Most notably, the Global Equity Fund stands out due to strong performance. The common misperception of ESG investing is that it comes at the expense of returns, but the Global Equity Fund has a strong 20-year track record and out-performance relative to the benchmark for the 1, 3, and 5 year periods.
Unique to the Global Equity Fund is the strategy’s environmental emphasis. The Global Equity Fund was created to identify companies that recognize ecological limits and mitigate environmental risk. To do so, the Global Equity Fund investment team analyzes companies across its Environmental Criteria.
Another differentiator between many ESG asset managers and Trillium is that many managers depend heavily on quantitative inputs, either by taking an exclusionary negative screen approach or by relying solely on an external data provider. While the Global Equity Fund incorporates exclusions, the most important part of the investment philosophy and process is driven by in-depth, integrated fundamental research focused on strong ESG policies and practices.
As ecological limitations and climate change impacts escalate, it is increasingly important that investors manage this risk. One area in which the Global Equity Fund demonstrates extensive experience is in fossil-fuel-free investing. While some investors have only become aware of the impacts of climate change in the past several years; our strategy was founded upon these investment implications 20 years ago. The Global Equity Fund has also been fossil-fuel-free since inception.