Friday Funds: Ramaswamy racks up $100m for anti-ESG ETF

The latest developments in ESG-related funds: HSBC AM announces world first biodiversity-screened ETF, Nordea launches ESG EM debt fund.

Strive Asset Management, the anti-ESG investing house set up by Vivek Ramaswamy and Anson Frericks, has racked up more than $100 million in assets under management in its debut US energy ETF, according to a statement from the firm. The ETF, which tracks a Solactive US energy index, saw $160 million in traded volume in the week after its launch on 9 August.

HSBC Asset Management has launched what it claims is the world’s first biodiversity-screened equity ETF. The fund, which HSBC is classifying as Article 8 under SFDR, tracks an index developed in conjunction with Euronext and Iceberg Data Lab that screens out firms based on biodiversity considerations including pesticides and whaling, as well as the bottom quartile on Sustainalytics’ risk performers methodology. It will then invest in the top 500 performers on Sustainalytics’ scores and the IDL Corporate Biodiversity Footprint.

Nordea Asset Management has launched an ESG-focused EM debt fund. The fund will invest in around 70-100 issuers, focusing on those with better ESG scores than the benchmark and engaging firms on sustainability issues. It will exclude firms that “obstruct” the UN SDGs.

Vanguard has launched an actively managed “environmental opportunities” equity fund. The fund, set to be managed by Ninety One, will invest in companies “involved in the process of decarbonisation” and with at least 50 percent revenues from activities which contribute positively to environmental change.

In other Vanguard news, the firm has launched two ESG ETFs, tracking developed Europe and North America all-cap indexes. The two benchmarks contain exclusion screens for non-renewable energy, sin stocks, weapons and companies in breach of the UN Global Compact.