All investment companies’ ESG policies have today been published on the Association of Investment Companies (AIC) website.
The disclosures are available on AIC members’ profile pages on the website and appear alongside existing information such as performance data and portfolio holdings.
The disclosures are free-form and allow investment companies to fully explain their ESG policies. For example, companies can state whether they have adopted or signed up to sustainability initiatives such as the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) or Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), or whether they actively exclude specific sectors such as tobacco or gambling. They can also explain how they engage with investee companies and provide links to further information.
Currently 63% of AIC members have submitted an ESG disclosure, representing 68% of members’ assets. These numbers are expected to grow as more members join the initiative. AIC member investment companies can submit or amend their ESG disclosures at any time.
To help investors the AIC has also launched an ESG education page, including a video that explains the relevance of ESG to investment companies, an ESG Q&A and a jargon buster, as well as ESG-related content and articles.
Ian Sayers, AIC chief executive, said: “ESG is personal and priorities will vary from investor to investor. That’s why we’ve given each of our member investment companies the opportunity to describe their ESG policy so that investors can select the companies that best match their preferences. The disclosures sit alongside information on our website such as investment companies’ performance and portfolios, so investors can easily incorporate ESG into their investment decisions.
“Investment companies’ closed-ended structure and their independent boards make them particularly suited for ESG strategies, from active engagement to social impact. However, we recognise that ESG is an area which is evolving rapidly. Our new ESG education page is designed to help investors by explaining key ESG-related terminology, answering questions investors may have and providing links to useful articles and videos.”