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Responsible Investment Industry in the Midst of Remarkable Evolution

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TORONTO — The responsible investment industry is in the midst of a remarkable evolution, according to new data from the 2022 Canadian Responsible Investment (RI) Trends Report. Released today by Canada’s Responsible Investment Association (RIA), the report tracks the national trends and outlook for RI, which refers to investments that incorporate environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) issues into the selection and management process.

This year’s report confirms that RI’s recent momentum is giving way to demand for sophistication and more vigilant reporting, signaling a maturing industry. Over the past two years, the rush into RI claims has been met by forces both external and internal to the financial industry, including the reputational and legal risks associated with greenwashing and lack of clarity around ESG industry terminology and disclosure requirements.

With its updated methodology, the report affirms that RI is entrenched in Canada, with reported assets under management at $3 trillion, and 94% of respondents using ESG integration as an RI strategy. This marks the emergence of a reliable baseline for RI market share and demonstrates that ESG Integration is a fundamental tool in Canadian investors’ decision-making.

“Greater vigilance is redefining the ‘floor’ of RI assets under management. Increased clarity and alignment are necessary to shape the slope and raise the ceiling,” said Patricia Fletcher, CEO of the RIA. “RI is here to stay, but we have work to do with everyone in the investment ecosystem to get the next steps right in order to propel further growth.”

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Growth expectations overall remain strong with 90% of respondents anticipating moderate to high levels of growth over the next two years. The demand for sophistication and vigilance is further reflected in investors’ future outlook, with respondents citing the top three potential deterrents to RI growth as: (1) mistrust or concerns about greenwashing, (2) a lack of standardized ESG disclosure frameworks/standards, and (3) lack of reliable data.

The report found an increase in the prevalence of all other RI strategies in addition to ESG integration, including corporate engagement, positive and negative screening, and thematic and impact investing, further pointing to the growing RI sophistication of Canadian investors. Respondents cited risk management as their top motivation for considering ESG factors.

Additional Highlights

  • Survey respondents reported the top three reasons for considering ESG factors are: (1) to minimize risk over time, (2) to improve returns over time, and (3) to fulfill fiduciary duty.
  • The three most prominent RI strategies by AUM are: (1) ESG Integration, (2) Corporate engagement & shareholder action, and (3) Negative/exclusionary screening.
  • Climate change is an overwhelming concern for responsible investors–-who also believe it is the greatest driver for growth over the next two years.

View the report here.

Quotes from 2022 Canadian RI Trends Report Partners:

“The evolution of responsible investing is a natural and expected process that is beneficial both to investors and the industry,” said Roger Beauchemin, President and CEO of Addenda Capital. “Several trends are helping to strengthen practices: investors’ growing appetite for data on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, pressure on companies to improve transparency, and industry efforts to define and meet standards in sustainable investing.”

“As the definition of responsible investing matures and the collective knowledge of our industry continues to increase, we are encouraged to see significantly more respondents turning to thematic approaches and to hear that a desire to address key issues like climate change will continue to drive growth over the next few years,” said Karrie Van Belle, Chief Marketing & Innovation Officer, AGF Investments Inc.

“We are incredibly proud of the progress that Canadian investors are making to deliver more transparency, a diversity of responsible investment solutions, and better client outcomes,” said Fate Saghir, SVP, Head of Sustainability, Mackenzie Investments. “This report reinforces Canada’s ambition to lead in the future low-carbon, equitable, and prosperous economy, and we at Mackenzie, are humbled to participate in this journey on behalf of our clients.”

“We are inspired by the level of attention investors are paying to climate factors. What’s more, the relatively low use of impact investing revealed by the report suggests there is untapped opportunity to leverage investment portfolios to reduce global carbon emissions,” said Adelaide Chiu, VP, Head of Responsible Investing & ESG Services. “We look forward to helping Canadians seize the opportunity to make an impact as they pursue their financial goals.”

“RBC Global Asset Management is proud to collaborate with the RIA Canada and support its efforts to build greater awareness of ESG trends and issues facing the investment community,” said Melanie Adams, Vice President and Head, Corporate Governance and Responsible Investment, RBC Global Asset Management. “Primary research, such as the 2022 Canadian Responsible Investment Trends Report, plays an important role in helping educate Canadian investors and advisors about responsible investment trends and sentiment.”

About the Canadian RI Trends Report
The RIA publishes the Canadian Responsible Investment Trends Report to understand and assess the characteristics of responsible investment in Canada. This study was completed by Environics Research on behalf of the RIA. The results are based on input from organizations invited to participate in an online survey between August 2nd and September 29th, 2022 as well as desk research completed by the RIA. All figures are stated in Canadian dollars as at December 31st, 2021. The 2022 report was generously sponsored by Addenda Capital, AGF Management Limited, Mackenzie Investments, NEI investments, and RBC Global Asset Management.

About the Responsible Investment Association (RIA)
The RIA is Canada’s industry association for responsible investment. The RIA’s membership includes asset managers, asset owners, advisors, and service providers who support its mandate of promoting responsible investment in Canada’s retail and institutional markets. RIA institutional members collectively manage more than $42 trillion in assets. Learn more at www.riacanada.ca.

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20221123005078/en/

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Contacts

Nick Buccheri
Director, Operations
Responsible Investment Association
nick@riacanada.ca
+1(416) 461-6042 x5

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The new rules of investment – The Economist

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High inflation, amid warnings of a global recession, is forcing investors to tear up the rule book. Since the financial crisis, bonds have been seen as a safe bet—even if they did not promise much of a return. Equity markets, led by soaring tech stocks, were where fortunes were made. Both have plunged this year.

In a world where rising interest rates have left governments worrying about how to afford their debts, and companies will struggle to raise cash, investors need new strategies.

On this week’s podcast, hosts Alice Fulwood, Soumaya Keynes and Mike Bird ask what those new rules of investing look like. Wei Li, global chief investment strategist for the world’s biggest investor, BlackRock, argues this new macroeconomic era is here to stay. And Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic adviser to Allianz, says investors need to focus on picking winners within stocks and bonds. Runtime: 39 min

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For full access to print, digital and audio editions, subscribe to The Economist at www.economist.com/podcastoffer

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Proposed sovereignty act could scare off investment: Calgary chamber – Calgary Sun

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‘We still don’t see how an act like this contributes to economic growth,’ said chamber President and CEO Deborah Yedlin

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The Alberta Sovereignty within a United Canada Act, tabled by Premier Danielle Smith on Tuesday, could drive investment out of the province, the Calgary Chamber of Commerce warns.

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Chamber president and CEO Deborah Yedlin said the bill, which would allow cabinet to issue directives to disregard federal initiatives, would not help businesses attract investment or employees should it pass the legislature.

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“We still don’t see how an act like this contributes to economic growth,” said Yedlin, adding that Alberta competes around the world for labour and capital, and that any hints of uncompetitiveness or uncertainty could cause the province to be seen as an unfavourable jurisdiction to invest in.

The act was the keystone policy of Smith’s leadership campaign this summer. If passed, Bill 1 would allow ministers to bring motions forward to the Alberta legislature to debate whether a federal initiative is unconstitutional or harmful to Alberta. If the initiative is deemed as such, the legislature could pass a resolution that would direct cabinet to take action, which could include issuing directives to public entities to not enforce the federal policy.

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Government documents argue the bill would not do anything to harm Alberta’s economy. The premier’s office did not return requests for comment Wednesday.

  1. Alberta Premier Danielle Smith makes her way to a press conference after the Speech from the Throne in Edmonton, on Tuesday, November 29, 2022.

    Smith introduces flagship Alberta Sovereignty Within a United Canada Act, giving cabinet new power

  2. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the APEC summit in Bangkok, Thailand on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

    Trudeau says Ottawa ‘not looking for a fight’ on Alberta Sovereignty Act

  3. Alberta Premier Danielle Smith speaks at a press conference after the Speech from the Throne in Edmonton, on Tuesday, November 29, 2022.

    A look at how Alberta’s proposed sovereignty act would work

  4. The Fourth Session of the 30th Legislature opened on November 29, 2022, with Her Honour the Honourable Salma Lakhani, Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, delivering the Throne Speech.

    Alberta Lt.-Gov. Salma Lakhani delivers Throne Speech focused on affordability, health-care reform, jobs, and fighting Ottawa

Speaking Tuesday, Smith said the bill is intended to put Ottawa on notice about provincial jurisdiction and ensure they are equal partners within Canada’s Constitution.

Yedlin argued the act does not allow for constructive conversations with the federal government and that all levels of government need to collaborate to make Alberta an attractive place to invest and to work, stating the province has to compete with jurisdictions from all corners of the globe.

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“This could cause us problems within Canada with other provinces, as well as with Ottawa. That’s not what we need right now,” said Yedlin. “We have worked with Ottawa in the past, perhaps not to Premier Smith’s satisfaction, but I would argue that, you know, let’s dial back.”

Yedlin said Quebec lost investment when that province grappled with the idea of separation. She said that while Smith’s bill makes it clear it is not about separating, just the idea of uncertainty could cause investors to look elsewhere.

Calgary Chamber CEO Deborah Yedlin.
Calgary Chamber CEO Deborah Yedlin. Azin Ghaffari/Postmedia

Lisa Baiton, president and CEO of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, said they are taking time to review the bill with their members. She said they are concerned about any policy that has the potential to create uncertainty for investors.

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“It is important for governments at all levels to work together with the industry in order to attract investment back into Canada,” said Baiton.

Finance Minister Travis Toews was critical of the sovereignty act while he ran against Smith in the leadership contest. At the time, he argued the bill would bring “economic chaos” to Alberta.

On Wednesday, he acknowledged he had legitimate concerns during the summer but said he has since had full opportunity to participate in the development of the bill along with his caucus colleagues, and that it addresses his previous concerns.

For me to support this bill it has to be constitutional, support the rule of law and not create business uncertainty. This bill, as proposed, addresses these concerns,” Toews said in a statement.

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Alberta Finance Minister Travis Toews, file photo.
Alberta Finance Minister Travis Toews, file photo. Darren Makowichuk/Postmedia

Meanwhile, several groups that could fall under the “public entity” definition of the act and could be subject to ministerial directives said they need to read the bill further before providing comment.

University of Calgary representatives said the school was reviewing the bill and will seek clarity on its application if passed. Mount Royal University representatives said they, too, are reviewing the bill and will work with the province on how it applies to post-secondary institutions.

The Rural Municipalities of Alberta declined to provide comment. While speaking at an unrelated news conference, Leduc Mayor Bob Young said they hadn’t had a chance to look at the bill and how it would affect municipalities.

Alberta Municipalities said they are reviewing the bill and that it appears to allow the cabinet to direct municipalities to not enforce federal laws. They said they may have more to say once their analysts have fully reviewed the legislation.

dshort@postmedia.com

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Clinton Orr, Canaccord Genuity, earns Canada’s Top Wealth Advisor award

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Clinton Orr is a Senior Portfolio Manager and Senior Wealth Advisor, CFP, CIM, DMA, DMS, with Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management. Recently, he was recognized as one of Canada’s Top Wealth Advisors in the province. The recognition is based on an independent affirmation of his ongoing commitment to his clients and their financial success.

This prestigious award is given based on a number of factors, including client service and best practices, industry experience, and growth. This has established Orr and his firm as a leader in the wealth management industry.

Canada’s Top Wealth Advisors ranking is developed and distributed by SHOOK Research, and is based on in-person, virtual, and telephone due diligence meetings and ranking algorithms. This algorithm factors in client retention, industry experience, review of compliance records, and firm nominations.

Quantitative criteria include assets that are under management as well as revenue generated for their firms. Investment performance is not considered criteria, because client objectives and risk tolerances vary, and advisors often don’t have audited performance reports.

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Who is Clinton Orr?

Clinton Orr is a financial services professional who earned his start in the industry in 2003. He is a founding member of Becker Orr Wealth Management, a branch of Canaccord Wealth Management, and is a Senior Wealth Advisor and Senior Portfolio Manager with Canaccord Genuity.

Clinton Orr has been able to successfully establish relationships with his clients, who consist of business owners, retirees and professionals. His success in the wealth management space has been achieved through dedication, hard work, a love for the profession, and genuine compassion and caring for his clients.

Orr has been able to set himself apart by developing a strong team and utilizing a unique process called Financial Architecture, which allows him and his team to build customized financial plans that address all of their clients’ needs.

Orr earned a Bachelor’s of Commerce degree and has earned professional designations in financial planning, investment management, and derivatives markets. He has previously been recognized for his efforts in 2021, winning the Wealth Management Advisor of the Year for Canada, as a part of Finance Monthly’s Global Awards. He was also the central region winner of the Client Dedication Award presented by Canaccord Genuity.

Orr is a regular contributor to the Clipper Weekly, providing his professional insights in a regular column that is published monthly. He also makes regular appearances on Global News Winnipeg.

Orr lives with his wife, Jodi, in rural Manitoba where they operate their own charitable initiative, the Pet Life Animal Fund. Both are passionate dog lovers who enjoy giving back.

When Clinton Orr isn’t working, he trains in Jiu-Jitsu and currently holds a blue belt. He and his wife also enjoy spending plenty of time together watching the Winnipeg Jets and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

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