We proactively seek opportunities to fully align our clients’ investments with their personal values. The use of Socially Responsible Investments (SRI) and Environmental Social Governance (ESG) is an important opportunity to put investment dollars behind important themes that can influence the future while making a profit. We provide all clients with education about ESG investment opportunities with the ability to build customized portfolios to reflect their values. ESG investing is incorporated in many of our client portfolios.
One of the biggest investment revolutions of the past twenty years has been the rise of SRI/ESG investments. Once available almost exclusively to large institutions, there are now a wide variety of options for individual investors to support the causes that resonate with them. We work with clients to identify which SRI/ESG themes are most important, discuss the investment options that most effectively support those themes, build a customized portfolio to reflect those themes, and then determine how much of the portfolio should be dedicated to SRI/ESG. This is a dynamic and evolving part of the industry with new choices launching on a frequent basis, leading to many education opportunities for our clients.
Flourish has hired ETHOS as an independent Financial Technology provider with specialization in SRI/ESG investments. The Ethos platform provides tools and resources that are incorporated into our research process, portfolio construction, and ongoing reporting. Ethos uses over 200 independent sources to collect data that is used to calculate a grade-based rating on individual companies.
Company ratings are combined through a weighted average to get a grade for a mutual fund or exchange traded fund (ETF). Flourish incorporates reporting from Ethos on client holdings and on overall portfolio metrics for a detailed summary of SRI/ESG impact. In addition, Flourish participates in National peer groups to discuss SRI/ESG which supports a proactive approach to effectively incorporating these investments into client portfolios. Finally, our research process includes one-on-one meetings with each potential SRI/ESG investment before it will be introduced to client portfolios.
There are a wide variety of investment themes that can be supported through SRI/ESG. A sampling includes: eliminating carbon emissions, supporting renewable energy, investing in companies with gender and racial pay equality policies with diverse Board representation, anti-weapons and/or anti-tobacco, or avoiding child labor. We are constantly seeking new investment opportunities in this space and working with clients to align their investments with causes that are important to them.