A billion euros shifts back into SRI funds as markets rise

Green themed funds also up on the back of investor confidence.

Over a billion euros (€1,068.3m) shifted back into European SRI funds during May as equity markets rose, according to the latest available figures compiled for Responsible Investor by Lipper Feri, the investment data group. Bond funds were among the biggest sellers representing three of the top five asset gatherers during the month. SRI funds or ‘RI Screened’ as they are labelled by Feri are those that have undergone an ‘extra financial’ ESG screen in their stock selection process. The largest selling RI Screened fund was French insurer Macif’s short-term SRI fund which took in assets of €173.1m. In second place was Belgian fund manager KBC’s Obli Euro bond fund with sales of €128m. Third was London-based environmental fund manager Impax’s Dublin-domiciled Environmental Markets equity fund which netted €126m. Inflows into SRI funds have been volatile in recent months. A total of €25.3m was pulled from the SRI funds universe in March, although the largest selling funds still enjoyed triple-figure inflows. That compared with positive net inflows for the SRI sector of €599m during February. Money market funds continue to dominate in terms of size amongst European RI screenedfunds. The largest remains Société Générale’s Invest Monetaire ISR fund with total assets of just over €1.9bn. In second place is Allianz’s Securicash SRI fund with aseets of €1.78bn. In third place is BNP Paribas’ Moné Etheis fund with €1.47bn. The total sector is now worth €42bn. Sales of European green themed funds also went positive during May. Total sales of the Feri labeled sector of ‘RI extended’ funds, which includes funds with multiple exclusions, those following a norms-based strategy and themed climate change and microfinance funds, were also healthy for the month at €396.1m. Blackrock’s New Energy Fund was the biggest seller, netting €54.6m. Another equity fund, BNP Paribas’ B Fund – Autocalleable 01 was second with sales of €35.5m. Dexia’s Micro-Credit/Blueorchard Debt fund was third with sales of €34.8m. Blackrock’s New Energy Fund remains the market leader in size terms with assets of €2.38bn, followed by Pictet’s Water fund with 2.07bn. In third place is Pioneer’s Global Ecology fund with €795.3m. The total sector is worth €14.1bn. Total mainstream equity fund sales during May came in at €16.2bn.