Thomson Reuters Extel names Europe’s best SRI research and fund management houses

Survey reveals rise in SRI research commissions.

Citi Investment Research has scooped the award for the best European SRI broker firm in the Thomson Reuters Extel/UKSIF
2008 Socially Responsible Investing & Sustainability Survey. French research units Société Générale and Cheuvreux, part of the Crédit Agricole group were second and third best research teams respectively. The survey, which is considered an industry benchmark in European buy-side and sell-side developments, represents the views of over 300 investment professionals from 19 countries. Citi’s research dominance was underscored by the placing of two of its analysts, Mike Tyrrell and Meg Brown in first and second place in the list of leading individual SRI brokers, followed by Sarj Nahal of Société Générale in third place. In the category for best SRI fund manager, UK house Aviva Investors picked up the top spot with RCM Allianz and Threadneedle Asset Management in second and third places respectively. Société Générale was placed first in a separate category for best broker in renewable energy research, followed by UBS and Cheuvreux in third place. Soc Gen also came out top as leading corporate governance broker beating Paris-based Oddo Securities into second place and JP Morgan into third spot. Notably, the survey revealed that 55% of buy-side respondents are now attributing 2% or more of total commissions spend to SRI, compared with less than 1% in 2005.It said that over 60% of buy-side respondents said they believed that commissions directly related to SRI/Sustainable research services would increase in the next 12 months, with 4 out of 5 fund managers looking for SRI research to be integrated into mainstream investment analysis. The survey said that those investment houses, particularly Citi, Cheuvreux and Société Générale had secured leading positions by upping the amount they invest on their SRI research. In a new category for the best corporate sustainability communications for quoted companies, UK supermarket giant Tesco came out on top with Danish pharma group Novo Nordisk second and BASF of Germany third. Penny Shepherd, chief executive of the UK Sustainable Investment Forum (UKSIF), said: “The results of the 2008 survey suggest that SRI and sustainability research continues to grow in breadth and quality. Established teams and individuals are continually raising the calibre of the research they produce; which is now augmented by the innovation and enthusiasm of new entrants to the market. Another exciting indication from the survey results is that the quality of ESG analysis is being recognised by a greater number of fund managers, who are allocating greater commission spend in this area. The survey positively suggests that this trend is set on an upward trajectory.”