Sustainable investing
August 26, 2020

Is the Rapid Rise of ESG Sustainable?

August 26, 2020
Charlie Reinhard
Head - NAM Investment Strategy
Paisan Limratanamongkol
Head of Quantitative Research and Global Asset Allocation, Citi Investment Management
Wind turbine in green field

ESG inflows are at record levels. Can this continue?

Mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs) that invest based on a combination of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors saw record inflows of $20.6 billion in 20191. Thats almost four times the inflows in 2018, itself a record year. Record inflows continued in the first quarter of 2020 despite a correction halfway through the quarter.

This rapid growth in investor interest has prompted the questions of whether investing with an ESG framework is part of a fundamental long-term shift or an unsustainable fad. Here, our assessment of the evolving sustainability landscape, a look at its current challenges and our analysis of ESG performance across various measures from 2007 through the first quarter of 2020.

1 Morningstar, as of April 21, 2020