Allianz Global Investors has made available to Spanish investors the ETHICA fund, an equity strategy investing in the eurozone following the principles of the Church's social doctrine.
The ETHICA fund was launched in 2008 on the initiative of the Bishops' Conference of France, which aimed to offer all the dioceses the possibility to invest in equities while following the Church's doctrine. Since then, investment in the strategy has been reserved to religious institutions but with the launch of new classes, the fund was opened to any investor.
The strategy aims to achieve a performance over the medium and long term by investing in shares of companies that meet the following ethical criteria: Respect for human rights; life and the promotion of peace; respect for core labour rights; development of social progress and employment; environmental conservation; respect for rules of market operation and compliance with rules of good governance. Taking into account these criteria will be added to that of conventional financial criteria, such as earnings growth or firm valuation, in order to build a portfolio with the best ethical/quality financial qualifications possible.
With over €80m in assets under management, the fund has beaten its benchmark by 100 basis points annually during the 2008-2018 period.
It is managed by Christine Clet-Messadi, supported by a team of SRI analysts. The Bishops' Conference of France takes part of a regular committee that ensures the proper application of the principles described.
Clet-Messadi joined Allianz Global Investors in France in 1994 as a financial analyst in charge of the pharmaceuticals industry. Since 2002, she has been a European equity fund manager.
Marisa Aguilar, managing director of Allianz Global Investors in Iberia, said: "With the launch of the ETHICA fund in Spain we offer a strategy of proven success to local investors who want to invest following the principles of the Church's social doctrine. This is another example of our commitment to sustainable and socially responsible investment."