Natixis launching 401(k) market's first ESG-focused target-date mutual funds

The funds seek to capitalize on the growing popularity of environmental, social and corporate governance investing, and help diversify in an increasingly competitive TDF market

Dec 16, 2016 @ 11:13 am

By Greg Iacurci

Natixis Global Asset Management is seeking to be the first asset manager to launch target-date mutual funds focusing on environmental, social and corporate governance causes, hoping to capitalize on broader momentum for ESG investing and recent regulatory guidance making it more palatable for 401(k) plan sponsors.

Portfolio managers for the funds, the Natixis Sustainable Future Funds, will select securities based on issues such as “fair labor, anti-corruption, human rights, fair business practices and mitigation of environmental impact, seeking a diversified portfolio of investments that contribute to a more sustainable future,” according to a Dec. 15 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The company's push into a previously unoccupied target-date niche is further proof of asset managers' strategy of diversification to stand out in an increasingly competitive, and lucrative, defined-contribution market. The funds represent Natixis' first offering in the nearly $900 billion target-date mutual fund market.

The Labor Department last year issued guidance meant to boost retirement-plan fiduciaries' consideration of ESG funds in their 401(k) plans. That guidance acknowledged fiduciaries can proactively use ESG factors when selecting investments, as long as they also focus on an investment's economic merits.

The product also comes as socially responsible investing grows more popular, especially among younger investors and women. U.S. domiciled ESG assets under management have grown more than 30% since 2014, to nearly $9 trillion, according to the Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment.

Morningstar Inc. this year launched an ESG scoring system for investors and advisers so they can judge the overall impact of a fund's holdings.

0
Comments

What do you think?

View comments

Recommended for you

Sponsored financial news

Featured video

INTV

Children of AI, and when they are coming to financial advice

Technology reporter Ryan Neal talks about the tremendous progress in artificial intelligence in other industries, and how its applications are slowly making headway in the advice sector.

Latest news & opinion

SEC advice rule: Here's what you need to know

We sifted through the nearly 1,000-page proposal and picked out some of the most important points.

Cadaret Grant acquired by private-equity-backed Atria

75-year-old owner Arthur Grant positions the IBD for the 'next 33 years.'

SEC advice rule seeks to tighten reins on brokers

The proposed rule puts new restrictions on brokers, but it is still unclear how strongly the SEC is clamping down.

SEC advice rule hearing updates

Commission says a lot of work ahead, public will have 90 days to comment.

SEC advice proposal unveiling: Here's what to expect

Chairman Jay Clayton will initiate momentous action Wednesday, as the commission meets to debate a rule on broker and adviser standards.

X

Hi! Glad you're here and we hope you like all the great work we do here at InvestmentNews. But what we do is expensive and is funded in part by our sponsors. So won't you show our sponsors a little love by whitelisting investmentnews.com? It'll help us continue to serve you.

Yes, show me how to whitelist investmentnews.com

Ad blocker detected. Please whitelist us or give premium a try.

X

Subscribe and Save 60%

Premium Access
Print + Digital

Learn more
Subscribe to Print