Guest Spot: Responsible investing with a track record

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  • Author : King & Shaxson
  • Date : 15 Apr 2020

Here at King & Shaxson we have been managing ethical portfolios since 2002, and in March this year we celebrated the 10-year anniversary of our Model Portfolio Service. It’s quite a landmark, and although we’ve always had confidence in the longevity of our offering, it’s great to reach this milestone! I’m not sure how many other MPS with a core responsible or ethical investment mandate have reached this ripe old age.

Ethical Investing isn’t new, we know that, with details of maybe the first ethical screen arising in 1758.Back then exclusions were predominantly driven by faith, but the market has certainly come a long way since then.

This way of investing is personal to every one of us in the team, and this has been the case ever since our CEO Wayne Bishop started the business back in 2002. We personally invest according to our own ethics, meaning we share the drive and passion with your clients. We believe managing clients’ investments this way is becoming mainstream, and the pressure points with regards to sustainability have never been pushed so hard before.

 

Changing times

Going back 10 years to when we launched our Model Portfolio Service on the back of advisor demand, the availability of investible assets was limited to say the least. There were some funds out there with a good ethical heritage, but for every fund that passed our screen there was many that did not. That still rings true today, but our investable universe has grown dramatically.

Our product is much more than just a negative screen, as sometimes thought with the word Ethical. Yes, of course we do apply a negative screen to avoid the various ‘sin’ stocks, but here atKing & Shaxson we are in fact adding much more to the investment process.Like the market we too have evolved. Whilst screening out sectors such as tobacco, gambling and fossil fuels to name but a few, we implement a positive inclusion, which by its very nature finances solutions to various social and environmental issues. All of which comes on top of the standard investment criteria.

Our Model Portfolios that sit on the Novia platform marry together funds across the spectrum of capital, from responsible investing right through to Impact. We therefore aim to meet the vast majority of investors’ concerns by selecting a broad range of funds that are specific in their goal, whether this is Ethical, SRI, ESG or Impact focused. On top of this, by selecting a wide variety of funds, we are further diversifying the risk of each portfolio; ensuring that exposure to individual companies, specific sectors or fund houses is limited. Our risk adjusted returns versus various conventional benchmarks is highly commendable.

 

Serious Scrutiny

As part of our ongoing in-house due diligence we conduct an ‘Under the Bonnet’ screen each month that ensures “greenwashing” (where funds that hold stocks that are questionable from an ethical/ESG perspective) are avoided. This thorough screening approach is on top of external research data we have access to, and is paramount to the integrity and longevity of our service.

We pride ourselves on the scrutiny we employ, be it with new funds and/or existing investments. Engagement with various Fund Managers in this area is also very important, and unless the underlying investment is glaringly obvious, we will engage with the fund house and question their rationale for any asset that piques our interest. From that feedback, we will decide on our actions within the investment team.

We feel that education around our solutions is key, therefore we can supply advisor support material, be it questionnaires to aid client articulation of their ethics, through to monthly factsheets and client friendly brochures. We are always keen to meet advisors face to face or via online webinars to discuss our MPS solution available to you.

We have many advisors using our MPS via Novia already and we commit that we will stay true to our heritage and carry on the good work we have done. Our 10 year track record is only just the beginning, and although we are very happy with current performance, we are only as good as our next investment. Here’s to the next 10 years!

For more information please visit our website www.kingandshaxsonethical.co.uk. You can also contact our Asset Management team on 0207 426 5960 or via ethical@kasl.co.uk. Our five fund of fund models are available on Financial Express (FE), please request access.

Disclaimer

The information contained in this document is for general information purposes only should not be considered a personal recommendation or specific investment advice. Please remember that the value of investments and the income arising from them may fall as well as rise and is not guaranteed. You may not get back the amount invested, especially in the early years.

Company Information

King & Shaxson Asset Management Limited (Reg. No. 3870667) has its registered office at 1st floor, Cutlers Court, 115 Houndsditch, London, EC3A 7BR. The Company is registered in England and Wales and is part of the PhillipCapital Group. King & Shaxson Asset Management Limited (FCA Reg. No. 823315) is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, 12 Endeavour Square, London, E20 1JN.

The statements and opinions expressed in the Guest Spot are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Novia Financial plc or any of its employees. The company does not take any responsibility for the views of the author. Any links, web pages and documentation within the Guest Spot are provided by pages maintained by independent third parties and Novia accepts no responsibility for the availability, content or use of the information contained within them.

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