Responsible investments for a more sustainable economy
Amundi, a signatory of the PRI(1) since its founding in 2006, received an A+ in all modules this year. Fiona Reynolds, PRI, and Élodie Laugel, Amundi, discuss the future of responsible investment.
Fiona Reynolds, Chief Executive Officer,
Principes for Responsible Investment
Élodie Laugel, Chief Responsible
Investment Officer, Amundi
Has the pandemic changed the course of responsible investing?
Fiona Reynolds : The pandemic has served as an accelerator for responsible investment, providing a kind of proof point for sustainability. It has driven a shift in thinking and a foregrounding of the importance of balance—both in natural ecosystems and in our societies. In the wake of the crisis, investors are beginning to look beyond risk and return and are increasingly taking into consideration the outcomes their investments have on people and planet in addition to profit.
Élodie Laugel : Covid-19 definitely shined a spotlight on the Social dimension in ESG. It also speeded up the shift in favour of responsible investment. While no guarantee of future strength, the clear 2020 outperformance of ESG best-in-class stocks both in the US and in Europe should prompt more companies to integrate ESG in their models and heighten interest in ESG criteria.
How should investors approach building back a better economy?
F. R. : At the PRI, we believe that the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a roadmap for where we need to go, and the global recovery from Covid-19 presents us with an unprecedented opportunity to get there. We believe our signatories—with a combined AuM of more than USD100 trillion—can play a unique role in helping the world to realise a future which is sustainable, green and just and to meet the SDGs, plugging the USD5-7 trillion a year funding gap that is currently required from the private sector alone. This involves working individually, and in collaboration with fellow investors and broader stakeholders.
É. L. : A sustainable recovery calls for solutions that bring everyone on board. For individual end-savers, we believe it is crucial to translate the recovery into ESG savings products that are easy to understand and transparent. CPR AM’s Invest — Social Impact or Amundi’s fund on Emerging Market Green Bonds are great examples. More broadly, Amundi’s responsible approach aims to reduce ESG risks and support positive change through impact, while engaging with companies to do better, as in our ESG Improvers strategy. Amundi is glad to see biodiversity and Just Transition on the table for COP26.
(1) Principles for Responsible Investment
CPR Invest – Social Impact, the first fund dedicated to reducing social inequalities
The first fund in the world to make reducing inequalities a core premise of its investment process. Launched in March 2020, this is a global equities fund that selects companies that are the most committed to reducing inequalities in their home countries. Its investment universe comprises some 1,100 stocks, or almost 36% of the MSCI World All Countries.
Amundi makes the top 10
of Voting Matters 2020 rankings
Every year, ShareAction publishes their Voting Matters report, assessing the voting records of the 60 largest global asset management firms on social issues and climate change. The 2020 edition shows once again that European asset managers, and Amundi in particular, are still leading the way on resolutions. Amundi was ranked in the top ten for its voting performance on the 102 resolutions under consideration. Most notably, the company scored 89% for its votes supporting climate and social resolutions.