Fisher Funds shuns thermal coal investments
By Fisher Funds
09 June, 2017
In what is believed to be a first for New Zealand fund managers, leading KiwiSaver provider Fisher Funds has announced it is banning investments in thermal coal producers across all portfolios following a review of its responsible investing policy.
Fisher Funds has added thermal coal to its exclusion criteria in recognition of thermal coal's impact on man-made climate change.
"Thermal coal's role was clearly highlighted in the Paris accord on climate change. Given the availability of other sustainable sources of renewable energy that are better for the environment, we simply can't justify investing in thermal coal; it just isn't the right thing to do" says Fisher Funds Director Frank Jasper.
Jasper continues "responsible investing, however, isn't just about excluding the worst companies which is often where people's attention is focussed. As an active manager we go further on behalf of our clients and assess the environmental, social and governance (ESG) behaviour of the companies we invest in. We want to ensure our portfolio companies meet basic standards of good conduct. This is something passive funds can't do".
"To supplement our own fundamental research we have teamed up with leading global ESG researcher, MSCI ESG Research. They provide a gateway to a comprehensive ESG database covering thousands of companies which helps us objectively evaluate the severity of any questionable behaviour."
"It's clear that New Zealand investors want to be reassured that their money is invested in a responsible manner and rightly so. Since we began in 1998 we have always been transparent with clients about where their money is invested and why. Our responsible investing policy is an extension of this principle. We believe our policy positions us at the forefront of responsible investing in New Zealand."
More information about Fisher Funds' responsible investing policy can be found at fisherfunds.co.nz/responsible-investing.
Fisher Funds is the largest New Zealand owned and operated fund manager and KiwiSaver provider, managing over $7 billion for more than 250,000 clients. The company has one of New Zealand's largest and most experienced investment teams who collectively have more than 250 years investing experience.