Commentary

Feeding 10 Billion People in a Climate-Changing World

In order to sustain this population and our growing demand for resource-intensive animal-based foods, the World Resources Institute estimates that crop production will need to increase by 56% from a 2010 baseline.

Commentary

How to Evaluate the "Sustainability" of Sustainable Mutual Funds

Sustainable investing has come a long way. In its early days, investment managers, like Saturna Capital, created faith-based investment processes, focused on excluding companies or industries that conflicted with the tenets of an investor’s faith. This led to proactive investing, often referred to as advocacy investing, a process that encourages companies, sectors, and regions to engage in better business practices.

Commentary

Sustainable Development Goals — What Are The SDGs?

The Global Goals for Sustainable Development (SDGs), officially known as “Transforming Our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” consist of 17 goals and 169 targets that were created to end poverty, promote prosperity and well-being for all, and protect the planet.

Commentary

The Case for Active Management in ESG

Perhaps the most dominant trend in the mutual fund industry over the past several years has been the rise of passively managed, index-tracking mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs), which have supplanted a large portion of actively managed assets under management.

Commentary

Malaysia: Where Voters Rule

In the mold of Winston Churchill in 1951, a spirited Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad has fought and won re-election as prime minister after years out of office. Dr. Mahathir returns to the leadership position he held for 22 years up to 2003 – a period that saw Malaysia rise into the ranks of middle income countries. 

Commentary

Green Bonds A Growing Market, But Not Without Weeds

The emergence of green bonds presents an attractive sustainable vehicle for fixed income investors, though not without drawbacks. The potential value of green bonds is obvious from the name; the securities prioritize the importance of environmental concerns as a means of either reducing risk or forming a competitive advantage when using the proceeds from the sale of the note.

Commentary

The Disruptive Destiny of Demographics

Few things in this world can be predicted with accuracy over multiyear periods and fewer still over multidecade spans. One exception is population demographics. Based on data today, we have a good idea how populations will develop through 2050.

Commentary

What We Want and What We Get: Error Bias in Investing

As we observe events in realms such as financial markets, politics, or weather, we tend to form beliefs — be they explicit or implicit beliefs — about cause and effect, or whether the events were positive or negative, good or bad. Science has formalized this process: testing a hypothesis with empirical data. One of the tradeoffs when evaluating beliefs in light of evidence, or a hypothesis in light of data, is the type of error we would prefer if our beliefs turn out to be wrong. In the investment realm, this bias can affect our beliefs and behaviors, such as our tolerance for risk and our allocation choices. Several examples will help illustrate this point.

Commentary

Are Your Investments at Risk of Becoming Stranded Assets?

At one point or another, we have all heard the saying "out with old, in with the new." We do not need to look too far in this modern technological age to find cogent examples, including...

Commentary

The Sustainability Smile

In the context of investing, the term 'sustainability' lacks sharply defined boundaries. This broad label tends to create more confusion than clarity, prompting some advisors to simply skip it and move on.

Commentary

Drug Prices and Political Rhetoric

Drug companies make convenient villains, but is painting an entire industry with a broad brush the best way to encourage innovation and advance health care?
Commentary

2016 Commercial Real Estate Outlook

Encouraging fundamentals and positive developments in broadly-used sector classifications and US tax structure bode well for Real Estate in 2016.
Commentary

As Goes January...Revisited

Oh, market volatility — your foul stench is particularly rancid in the dark of winter, when the taxman begins his rounds and rebalancing fills investors' minds.
Commentary

Don't Be a Consumer Dinosaur

The Consumer Staples sector logged solid stock market performance in 2015, outpacing the S&P 500 Index. Intra-sector performance, however, varied widely, even among companies we might consider similar blue chips. Clorox enjoyed double-digit appreciation, while Procter & Gamble saw a double-digit share price decline, and Church & Dwight came in between the two. Changes to the market landscape are forcing Home and Personal Care companies to evaluate past practices and develop new strategies to address the evolution of consumer preferences and purchasing behavior.
Commentary

Can Sustainable Portfolios Offer Sufficient Diversification?

Do sustainable oriented portfolios exhibit lower volatility? Sufficient diversification? The data say, "Yes!"