French newspaper Les Echos has highlighted the management of the International Federation for Human Rights’ (FIDH) Sicav, called Sicav Libertés & Solidarité, by La Banque Postale Asset Management.
Launched in 2001, this SRI fund is two thirds invested in government bonds and one third in equities and corporate bonds, mostly European, and its universe is based on standards focusing on the respect of human rights.
Half of the fund returns are reversed through donations.
Every two years since 2001, the FIDH publishes a classification of the countries deemed to have the highest respect for human rights, but since 2007 focuses only on the member states of the European Union.
In 2014, 67 indicators of human rights were assessed, including gender equality, migrants and refugees rights, and freedom of speech, as well as 17 environmental criteria.
The allocation to government bonds depends on the ranking of the states.
The fund invests 50% of assets in the government bonds of those ranked first to fifth, 30% in the subsequent five, whiel the remaining 20% is invested in the public debt of states ranked 11 to 15.
The top 5 last year were Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Slovenia and France. Countries such as Italy, Portugal, Belgium and Greece have not reached the top 15.
Rozenn Le Caïnec, head of Cross Assets and Multi Assets Management at La Banque Postale AM and responsible for the asset allocation of the Sicav Libertés & Solidarité, told Les Echos that the fund invests in bonds with a maturity date of three to five years.
“Yields are extremely low because of the QE of the ECB. In order to offset the drop of yield in government bonds, the board of the Sicav has decided two years ago to allow corporate bonds in the fund. However, private issuers must respect children, women and work rights if they want to be considered for the Sicav,” Le Caïnec said to the newspaper.
Libertés & Solidarité has some €19m under active management.