Flight to safety in European SRI and green fund sales reflects continuing market crisis

Cash funds best sellers in both sectors as downturn persists.

European retail SRI and green-themed fund sales continued to suffer along with equity markets, with both shedding considerable amounts of assets in November last year, according to the latest available figures compiled for Responsible Investor by Lipper FMI, the investment data group. SRI, or RI Screened funds as they are labelled by Lipper FMI, recorded outflows and market depreciation of €1.4bn in assets, extending months of outflows. RI screened’ funds are those which have undergone an ‘extra-financial’ ESG (environment, social and governance) screen in their stock selection process. The continuing economic crisis in Europe was underscored by a flight to safety: the top three grossing funds in the sector – indeed the only funds to reach treble figures – were all money market funds. A roster of bond and balanced funds followed them.
The best selling fund in November was French fund manager Amundi’s Tréso Eonia ISR cash fund with a rise of €810.7m. Second was Amundi’s Tréso ISR fund with an asset increase of €503.8m. Third was French rival AXA’s Trésor Court Terme fund, which took in €219.4m over the month. It was a good month, however, for Dexia, the troubled Franco Belgian fund manager, whichhad five bond, balanced and cash funds in the top 20 sellers. France-domiciled SRI cash funds dominate the top five largest funds in Europe. The biggest is Amundi’s Tréso Eonia ISR with €13.8bn Second is its Tréso ISR fund with €7.3bn. Green themed and norms-based European RI retail fund sales – labelled ‘RI Extended’ by Lipper FMI – mirrored the slide in flows by losing €321.2m over the month. Sales were again marked by a flight to the relative security of cash and bond funds. The best seller was French fund manager Ofivalmo’s OFI Trésor ISR fund, which increased by €89.8m.
Second was Norwegian manager Storebrand’s Norsk Kreditt IG with €61.8m, followed by a sister fund Storebrand Norsk Kreditt IG 20 with €47.4m. Fourth was the UK’s CCLA Investment Management, whose COIF Charities Investment Fund took in €44.3m.
The largest RI Extended fund is Danish group Danske Bank’s Invest Dannebrog Mellemlange Obligationer bond fund with €2.4bn in assets.
Second is Amundi’s Atout France French equities fund with just over €2bn.
See downloads – left hand column – for full sales table