Responsible Funds, June 28: Pax World Management carbon benchmarks its equity funds

The round-up of responsible funds news

Pax World Management, the New Hampshire-based adviser to the sustainable Pax World Funds range, has announced the results of carbon benchmarking of its five largest equity funds, carried out by analysis firm Trucost. The findings are that four of the five funds measured are already less carbon intensive than their benchmark indexes. Pax World is also taking steps to fully offset the carbon emissions of its fossil fuel-free Pax World Global Environmental Markets Fund.

New Forests, the Australia-based forestry fund manager, has announced the initial close of its Australia New Zealand Forest Fund 2 with commitments of AU$570m (€401.4m) from institutional investors. The fund will target hardwood and softwood timber plantation investments in Australia and New Zealand.

First Private, a Frankfurt-based asset management boutique, has launched its second renewable fund for institutional investors – one that invests in onshore wind parks based primarily in Germany. Wind Infrastructure I will begin acquiring its first parks after taking in seed money from two investors. The fund, a tax-efficient Luxembourg SICAV, will also seek wind park opportunities in European markets outside of Germany. The target volume is €200m.

The €22m Julius Baer EF Energy Transition fund has recently bought into two Chinese wind energy-related companies, China Suntien Green Energy and wind farm operator China Longyuan, according to a Citywire interview with fund manager Roberto Cominotto of Swiss & Global. It follows his decision at the end of May to return to solar energy, the report added.The Bridges Sustainable Property Fund has teamed up with property developers Urbis to build a new, sustainable residential development in the Bedminster district of Bristol in the UK – recently named as European Green Capital for 2015. The fund will finance the project and will work with Urbis “to create one of the most sustainable developments in the city”.


Exchange operator NYSE Euronext and France-based environmental, social and governance researcher Vigeo have expanded their range of ESG indices with the launch of the Euronext Vigeo Benelux 20, the Euronext Vigeo Eurozone 120 and the Euronext Vigeo US 50. It follows the launch of a suite of indices in March this year and ratings are based on a range of 38 criteria.

The World Bank’s IFC arm has published a review of the different approaches used by stock exchanges to build indices incorporating corporate governance. Raising the Bar on Corporate Governance: A Study of Eight Stock Exchange Indices is 56 pages long and has been prepared by Andreas Grimminger and Pasquale Di Benedetta.

MSCI has been approved for enclosure in the Calvert Social Index after a review. The index and ESG firm “has evidence of adequate governance policies and procedures” said Calvert. Other additions include conference company Dresser-Rand, which has improved its disclosure of environmental and workplace safety policies and Sprint Nextel Corp., which has “improved its customer service experience”.