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CI Global Asset Management expands fund and ETF line-up with ESG and Commodities mandates


CI Global Asset Management has launched three new investment options – two ESG-focused mandates offering both mutual fund and ETF series, and a commodity-focused liquid alternative ETF.

The new funds are:

CI Global Sustainable Infrastructure Fund, which is available in both mutual fund and ETF series, with the ETF series beginning trading today on the TSX under the symbols CGRN (ETF C$ Series) and CGRN.U (ETF US$ Hedged Series).

CI Global Green Bond Fund, which is available in both mutual fund and ETF series, with the ETF series beginning trading today on the TSX under the symbols CGRB (ETF C$ Series) and CGRB.U (ETF US$ Hedged Series).

CI Auspice Broad Commodity ETF, which begins trading today on the TSX under the symbol CCOM (Hedged Common Units).

“The new mandates are the latest steps in CI GAM’s ongoing initiative to modernise its investment fund line-up by introducing relevant and timely options that support investors’ interests and help them thrive in today’s challenging markets,” says Geraldo Ferreira, Senior Vice-President and Head of Investment Products and Manager Oversight for CI GAM.

“Over the past 18 months, we have expanded our selection of funds and ETFs in categories that include ESG, liquid alternatives, private equity, covered call strategies, active and passive ETFs, digital assets and other emerging investment themes.”

The launches of CI Global Sustainable Infrastructure Fund and CI Global Green Bond Fund broaden CI GAM’s selection of ESG-focused choices, which include CI Mosaic ESG ETF Portfolios, CI MSCI World ESG Impact Fund, CI MSCI World ESG Impact ETF, and CI Global Climate Leaders Fund.

CI Auspice Broad Commodity ETF is the eighth offering in CI GAM’s line-up of liquid alternative funds and ETFs. These include four fixed-income and two equity mandates, as well as the CI Alternative Multi-Strategy Fund. CI GAM writes that it is the Canadian industry leader in liquid alternative funds, with approximately CAD3.5 billion in assets under management (as at August 31, 2022).

CI Global Sustainable Infrastructure Fund’s investment objective is to provide income and long-term capital appreciation by investing primarily in companies with either direct or indirect exposure to sustainable infrastructure located anywhere in the world. It pays a monthly distribution and carries a low to medium risk rating.

“The fund is an opportunity for investors to benefit from the massive global transition to decarbonisation, digitisation and sustainability and to ensure their investment dollars are supporting the move to a greener planet,” Ferreira says. “At the same time, it also offers the traditional benefits of infrastructure investing, including consistent income, diversification, and the potential for reduced volatility relative to other equity sectors.”

The fund invests in companies in a diverse range of sectors and themes that may include: clean energy, such as wind, solar, hydropower and renewable fuels; alternative transportation with lower carbon intensity; improvements in packaging and wastewater management; and efficient data infrastructure.

The firm writes that the fund leverages the global sector expertise of the CI GAM investment team, with Kevin McSweeney serving as lead portfolio manager. McSweeney, who has over two decades of investing experience, is an infrastructure specialist who also manages CI Global Infrastructure Fund and other infrastructure-focused portfolios.

CI Global Green Bond Fund’s investment objective is to provide long-term total return by focusing on sustainable and responsible issuers by primarily investing in labelled green bonds issued by government, government-related and corporate issuers, located anywhere in the world.

Green bonds are fixed-income securities in which the proceeds are applied to projects or activities that promote climate or other environmental sustainability purposes. To become a “labelled” green bond, issuers must apply for certification by a recognized third party.

“Green bonds allow investors to align their investment and retirement goals with their environmental values,” Ferreira says. “The fund’s portfolio is also actively managed by the CI GAM fixed-income team to provide stability and income.”

Lead Portfolio Manager James Dutkiewicz, Senior Vice-President and Head of Fixed Income for CI GAM, has 30 years’ experience in income investing and asset allocation.

CI Auspice Broad Commodity ETF (“CCOM”)

CCOM seeks to replicate the performance of the Auspice Broad Commodity Excess Return Index by investing in financial instruments, including futures contracts and derivatives. The Index uses a quantitative methodology to track a diversified portfolio of commodity futures contracts, or components, across three sectors: agriculture, energy and metals.

The Index was developed by Auspice Capital Advisors Ltd, which has been appointed sub-advisor to CCOM. Auspice is a Calgary-based alternative asset manager that focuses on applying rules-based investment strategies across a broad range of financial and commodity markets.

“This ETF launch is especially timely, given that commodities are benefiting from supply constraints combined with heightened demand driven in part by infrastructure spending and the transition to a greener and more sustainable society,” Ferreira says. “As a result, exposure to commodities holds the potential to add inflation protection to investors’ portfolios.

“CCOM provides exposure to a broad range of commodities across three sectors – energy, agriculture and metals – combined with a rules-based approach designed to participate in gains while minimizing volatility and drawdowns,” Ferreira says.

“We are excited to partner with CI GAM in bringing the only broad commodity solution to the Canadian marketplace,” says Tim Pickering, Auspice’s Chief Investment Officer and Founder. “The recent COVID-19 crisis and ensuing resurgence in inflation demonstrate the relevance of the strategies we manage. Auspice offers a disciplined rules-based approach that aims to help investors to take advantage of both opportunity and weather turbulent market events.”

CCOM is classified as an alternative mutual fund and has a low to medium risk rating.

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