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Ashmore Group plc

PRI reporting framework 2018

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You are in Direct - Fixed Income » ESG incorporation in actively managed fixed income » Implementation processes

Implementation processes

FI 01. Incorporation strategies applied

01.1. Indicate 1) Which ESG incorporation strategy and/or combination of strategies you apply to your actively managed fixed income investments; and 2) The proportion (+/- 5%) of your total actively managed fixed income investments each strategy applies to.

SSA
0 Screening alone
0 Thematic alone
0 Integration alone
0 Screening + integration strategies
0 Thematic + integration strategies
0 Screening + thematic strategies
100 All three strategies combined
0 No incorporation strategies applied
100%
Corporate (non-financial)
0 Screening alone
0 Thematic alone
0 Integration alone
0 Screening + integration strategies
0 Thematic + integration strategies
100 Screening + thematic strategies
0 All three strategies combined
0 No incorporation strategies applied
100%

01.2. Describe your reasons for choosing a particular ESG incorporation strategy and how combinations of strategies are used.

ESG within fixed income is fundamentally a risk management consideration. Within the Emerging Markets fixed income space, the “Governance” aspect of ESG is best reflected in the political landscape. Ashmore’s investment committee meetings start off with a macro discussion and then moves to the individual countries. This review of individual emerging countries starts with a focus on what the likely effects of the external macro factors are on market behaviour and in turn, asset prices. The team analyses and discusses the ability (the financial position of a country) and the willingness (more qualitative focusing on the incentives of the policy-makers in-country) of countries to service their sovereign debt.

01.3. Additional information [Optional].

Within the Equities and Corporate Debt themes Ashmore is able to screen client portfolios to meet client requirements for geographic, sector and stock specific restrictions. Stock specific restrictions may include securities which meet clients’ own criteria. Examples of investment areas where screening of portfolios can be offered based on (or informed by) client requirements (using recognised investment industry identifiers and coding into Ashmore’s portfolio management system) include alcohol, animal / food products, armaments manufacturers or dealers, gambling, pornography and tobacco. Ashmore screens for, and prohibits, investment in companies manufacturing cluster munitions banned under the Oslo Convention.

Ashmore formalises EM country credit and ESG considerations at least quarterly, in conversations between various members of the Investment team and the Head of Research. In addition, the Investment Committee will consider the assessment for each country on an ad-hoc basis as it discusses country visit reports from Portfolio Managers returning from research trips, or when discussing significant events such as elections. Therefore, credit and ESG analysis are an integral part of Ashmore’s investment process for publicly traded fixed income securities.

Ashmore’s quantitative scorecard is a derivation of its Risk models and assesses 10 economic and ESG risk factors for Impact (low, moderate, high, or 1, 2, 3) and Probability (low, moderate, high or 1, 2, 3). The score of each factor would be Impact x Probability, with six possible outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 9. Adding the scores of all ten factors gives a country risk score that incorporates both credit risk and ESG risk. The theoretical minimum and maximum risk scores are thus 10 and 90 respectively, while the median is 30 and the average is 40. These metrics are reviewed against yields and spreads to determine if an appropriate risk premium has been built into Ashmore’s scenario analyses.

Within  Emerging Markets Debt segregated accounts, Ashmore  also offers clients the flexibility to implement their ESG constraints related to specific countries, sectors and securities (for example, restricted lists, concentration limits etc.).


FI 02. ESG issues and issuer research (Private)


FI 03. Processes to ensure analysis is robust

03.1. Indicate how you ensure that your ESG research process is robust:

specify description

          Ashmore formalises EM country credit and ESG considerations at least quarterly, in 
conversations between various members of the Investment team and the Head of Research.
        

03.2. Describe how your ESG information or analysis is shared among your investment team.

03.3. Additional information. [Optional]

The Investment Committee will consider the assessment for each country on an ad-hoc basis as it discusses country visit reports from Portfolio Managers returning from research trips, or when discussing significant events such as elections. Therefore, credit and ESG analysis are an integral part of Ashmore’s investment process for publicly traded fixed income securities.


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