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WisdomTree and Irish Life Investment Managers launch global sustainable equity ETF: WSDG

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WisdomTree has launched its first sustainable core equity solution, the WisdomTree Global Sustainable Equity UCITS ETF (WSDG), in collaboration with Irish Life Investment Managers (ILIM).

The WisdomTree Global Sustainable Equity UCITS ETF has been listed on the Börse Xetra and will be listed on the London Stock Exchange.

WSDG seeks to track the price and yield performance, before fees and expenses, of the Solactive WisdomTree Global Sustainable Equity UCITS Index, and is classified as an article 9 fund under SFDR and has a total expense ratio (TER) of 0.29 per cent.

The strategy, developed with ILIM, is designed to track the performance of listed companies from developed markets that positively contribute to social and/or environmental objectives according to defined sustainability criteria while striving for robust financial returns. The firm writes that ILIM has extensive experience in responsible investing and has developed a proprietary research platform and sustainability integration framework to work with clients to support their sustainability goals. ILIM currently manage over EUR53 billion in strategies that promote environmental or social characteristics.

The firm writes that the unique strategy utilises the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework to invest in companies with products and services that aim to help tackle climate change and social inequalities, promote a circular economy and/or help protect our natural capital. In addition, the strategy avoids negative externalities through strong ‘Do No Significant Harm’ (DNSH) and ‘Good Governance’ screens and excludes investments into controversial business activities. The strategy aims to limit deviation from a global developed markets equity benchmark, providing a sustainable alternative for core equity allocations.

The SDG framework adopted by the WisdomTree Global Sustainable Equity UCITS ETF classifies 11 of the 17 UN SDGs into 4 pillars:

Climate action: affordable and clean energy, climate action

Circular economy: responsible consumption and production

Healthy ecosystems: clean water and sanitation, life below water, life on land

Social equity: zero hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, reduced inequalities and sustainable cities and communities

Alexis Marinof, Head of Europe at WisdomTree, says: “Until now, our sustainable investing solutions have leveraged our expertise and expert partnerships in commodities and thematic equities, providing access to the metals and companies linked to the energy transition. Today, in collaboration with Irish Life Investment Managers, we have launched our first core sustainable equity ETF. The new article 9 ETF provides a differentiated approach to global developed market equities by integrating 11 of the 17 SDGs in the investment process.”

World leaders unanimously adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015, ambitiously aiming to speed economic prosperity and social well-being while protecting the environment. At the midpoint of implementing the 2030 Agenda, the world is falling short of meeting those 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. While certain areas have witnessed progress, there remains a concerning proportion of targets that are either progressing too slowly or regressing.

Nicholas MacShane, Head of European Partnerships at ILIM, says: “Leveraging our expertise in indexation, quantitative research and responsible investing, this collaboration with WisdomTree builds on our reputation for creating customised solutions that help clients meet their sustainability goals. We are very proud to have developed this innovative strategy with the WisdomTree team.”

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