- Sustainable funds must fit into your overall financial strategy
- Doing the "right thing" shouldn't mean sacrificing returns
- Research is key - not all sustainable funds are created equal
TORONTO, April 21 /CNW/ - This Earth Day, BMO Financial Group reminds investors to keep sustainability top of mind when making investment decisions.
Sustainable development mutual funds allow Canadians to choose investments that factor in the environment. With Earth Day fast approaching, Serge Pépin, Director, BMO Investments Inc., points out that environmentally-friendly investment products can have a positive impact on both your wallet and the world at large.
"Increasingly, Canadians are becoming aware of the critical environmental issues facing our world such as global warming. Many are considering investment products with the environment top of mind," says Mr. Pépin. "Sustainability is not a passing fad. Governments and companies will continue to make it a priority. Therefore, choosing to invest in socially conscious funds makes perfect sense for the long-term investor."
Mr. Pépin offers the following advice to Canadians who are considering incorporating sustainable funds into their investment portfolios:
- Stick With The Program - Investing in sustainable mutual funds doesn't
mean restructuring your strategy. A well balanced portfolio should
have a mix of core broad-based asset classes and exposure to more
specialty products. It's important to speak to a financial advisor to
ensure you're choosing products that align with your overall financial
- Performance Is King - Doing the right thing shouldn't mean sacrificing
returns. While social responsibility is an important aspect of all
purchasing decisions, investment decisions should still be made based
on individual investment goals and potential return.
- Do Your Research - When considering your investment options, do some
research to ensure that the funds you're considering are credible when
it comes to their "sustainable" and/or "green" credentials. As well,
choose to invest in companies that do positive for the environment and
society instead of opting for "negative screening" funds that just
omit companies based on ethical/sustainable considerations. In other
words, find those funds that allow you to invest in companies that are
"doing good" in the world.
BMO offers two sustainable mutual funds, the BMO Sustainable Climate Class and the BMO Sustainable Opportunities Class. They provide exposure to climate and environmentally conscious technologies, products and services, as well as other sustainable themes, including healthy living, alternative energy and natural resources. The funds are created using a "positive screening" filter that integrates economic, environmental and social considerations to identify companies that are leaders in the field of sustainability.
Serge Pépin, Director, BMO Investments Inc., is available for further comment on the topic of sustainable funds and how to successfully integrate them into investment portfolios.
BMO and the Environment
BMO is one of the initial investors in the Greening Canada Fund, the first-ever voluntary carbon emissions reduction fund aimed exclusively at large Canadian corporations. The Fund will purchase and deliver carbon offset credits from across Canada for its investors. BMO's initial investment in the fund is $10 million.
BMO is a long-time signatory and respondent to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP); it is also one of the highest scoring companies in the world and the only Canadian bank in the CDP's Global 500 Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index for 2009. This is the second year in a row that BMO has been included on this prestigious list. Additionally, CDP's Canadian partner, The Conference Board of Canada, has also recognized BMO as a 2009 Canada 200 Climate Disclosure Leader.
BMO is listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index, the Jantzi Social Index and the FTSE4Good Series Index. BMO is also included on the 2009 Jantzi/Maclean's list of the 50 Most Responsible Corporations in Canada and has appeared on Corporate Knights Magazine's Best 50 Corporate Citizens list every year since 2003.
To help customers, investors, employees and other interested parties make sense of it all; BMO's Corporate Responsibility website has a section devoted to addressing climate change (www.bmo.com/environment). The site provides one of the most complete compilations of corporate performance data among its peers.
SOURCE BMO BANK OF MONTREAL
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