We apply a special investment strategy on our internally managed credit portfolio. All of the bonds are chosen via a selective procedure. The investment decisions are not based on a predefined benchmark. Instead, the portfolio contains a limited number of bond issues. This number is sufficient for differentiation purposes, but not too big to run out of control. For every company a full financial screening is made. As part of this screening attention is paid to ESG risks.
Currently we are strengthening our approach to ESG-integration in the FI portfolio. For every potential investment an ESG paragraph will be added to the investment proposal. This paragraph will contain an analysis of the ESG score of the company. The input is derived from an external research provider. The rationale behind the scoring, plus additional information, will be analysed by the analyst and recorded in the investment proposal. ESG risks can be a reason not to invest in a company.
The analysts responsible for the screening work for both the equity and FI portfolio. Additionally, there is a close cooperation between the FI and the equity team. Working knowledge on (ESG characteristics) of companies is shared between the teams.