4 drivers of growth in responsible investment


advisor.ca | Published February 3, 2017

Staff

Canada’s responsible investment (RI) market is growing rapidly: as of December 31, 2015, there was $1.5 trillion in RI assets under management in Canada, according to an updated version of the Responsible Investment Association’s (RIA) 2016 trends report–that represents a 49% increase between 2013 and 2015.

Other key findings include:
•responsible investing represents 38% of the Canadian investment industry;
•individual investors’ RI assets, which totalled $118 billion by 2015, have risen 91% in the last two years;
•pension fund assets make up 75% of the RI industry’s growth, increasing by $374 billion, or 45%, in the two-year period; and
•asset managers and owners rank the following as their top motivations for incorporating ESG factors into investment decisions: it helps minimize risk over time; it improves returns over time; and it helps fulfill fiduciary duty.

The RIA says investors are “very optimistic about the RI industry’s outlook,” in its report. Most survey respondents (80%) expect “either moderate or high levels of growth over the next two years. This is a significant increase from our last survey, in which 59% of respondents expected [significant] growth.” The RIA polled member investment firms as part of its 2016 Canadian Impact Investment Trends Report.

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Member of IIROC and the Canadian Investor Protection Fund
Stephen Whipp is a member of the Responsible Investment Association