Hot off his win at the WP Awards
, Georgetown advisor Ryan Colwell shared some exciting news Thursday that’s a game changer for advisors looking to satisfy demand for socially responsible investment.
“Recently there’s been a reasonably high demand from people who want to divest of fossil fuels in their portfolios. Until very recently there was really no investment fund that fit that bill. None,” Colwell said. “In April, IA Clarington and then followed very closely by one fund at AGF announced that these funds would be fossil free – which is great.”
The equity funds in question are the IA Clarington Inhanced Global Equity SRI Class, which is completely fossil fuel-free (no-carbon fund), the rest of their Canadian SRI funds are oil sands-free (low-carbon fund) and the AGF Global Sustainable Growth Equity Fund is fossil fuel-free.
Three great options for those looking to go SRI.
“This was a step in the right direction for clients that want this and it’s very exciting,” said Colwell. “The problem was that I had my equity fund but now I need my fixed income. Very few clients are full equities. This is a smaller market [SRI] so people understand there’s not a huge selection but I figured I could find somewhere in the world a bond fund that was free of fossil fuels. There was none.”
In IA Clarington’s regular conference call Wednesday for advisors it surprised Colwell and others listening in with an SRI bent by making another big announcement on this front.
“They [IA’s SRI fund managers] have spoken to their bond manager and that bond manager is now committed to going oil sands-free in their Canadian bond fund,” said Colwell. “This to me is big news. Now I have a bond fund, while not completely fossil fuel-free, that is [IA Clarington] committing to being oil sands-free, which is closer to where I need to be.”
While the SRI world is still pretty small here in Canada, the latest news from IA Clarington is a sign advisors are starting to pay attention, hence the moves.
Still, the funds have their appeal with advisors and clients outside of SRI circles as a growing number of investors look to diversify their holdings outside the oil sands.