Socially Responsible Investments Reach $8.7 Trillion

Nov 21, 2016 4:30 PM ET

Socially Responsible Investments Reach $8.7 Trillion

Investments described as socially responsible or sustainable have grown by more than $2 trillion in the US over the last two years, up 33 percent from 2014, according to a new report. The surge is due to rising demand from US institutions for assets that answer to ESG—environmental, social, and governance—criteria.

At the start of this year, the sustainable, responsible and impact-investing category in the US totaled $8.72 trillion, according to the biennial report published by the US SIF Foundation, the Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment. The group says that more than 1,000 investment funds adding up to $2.6 trillion now include ESG criteria in their decision-making.

The report highlighted two specific areas of growth. Institutional investor assets that screen companies for diversity grew 22 percent, to $770 billion. And, for the first time, the report tracked investments made by gender filters, finding that $397 billion in investment focused on products or companies that support women’s social and economic development.  I’m John Howell for 3BL Media.