FaithInvest Board Chair, and Chief Investment Officer for Wespath Institutional Investments (US Methodists) Dave Zellner is out with a faith-based perspective on sustainable investing ‘Sustainable investing is smart, not political’ as an introduction to Wespath’s latest Sustainable Investment Report.
In the article, Dave notes a question many of you may also get: ‘We have received multiple questions about how ESG aligns with our fiduciary responsibilities to church employees and the related organizations who entrust their assets to Wespath’.
First, Dave notes ‘ESG factors [are] one element of a comprehensive approach to achieving strong, long-term investment returns’, and points to research Wespath shared with the FCI Interest Group in March on their ‘benchmark-beating’ performance experience from sustainable investing activities. The latter demonstrating an important foundation for Wespath: ‘We believe an economy with [sustainable] traits will create healthy financial markets and resilient companies that, in turn, will support our participants and institutional investors in reaching their long-term financial goals’. Sustainability, as Wespath defines it generally – ‘long-term prosperity for all, social cohesion and environmental health' – should create better financial outcomes, something they’ve experienced to date, and, we expect, will continue to do.
“In the face of clear indications that our approach benefits our stakeholders, I remain perplexed by the anti-ESG rhetoric spreading throughout the country.”