Investing

Assets Invested in ESG ETFs and ETPs Listed Globally Reached a Record of 280 Billion US Dollars at End of May 2021

By ETFGI

ETFGI, a leading independent research and consultancy firm covering trends in the global ETFs and ETPs ecosystem, reports assets invested in Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) ETFs and ETPs listed globally reached a record of US$280 billion at the end of May 2021. ESG ETFs and ETPs listed globally gathered net inflows of US$6.54 billion during May, bringing year-to-date net inflows to US$73.95 billion which is much higher than the US$26.42 billion gathered at this point last year. Total assets invested in ESG ETFs and ETPs increased by 4.1% from US$269 billion at the end of April 2021 to US$280 billion, according to ETFGI’s May 2021 ETF and ETP ESG industry landscape insights report, the monthly report which is part of an annual paid-for research subscription service.  (All dollar values in USD unless otherwise noted.)

Highlights

  • Assets invested in ESG ETFs and ETPs listed globally reached a record of $280 Bn at the end of May.
  • Record YTD net inflows of $73.95 Bn beating the prior record of $26.42 Bn gathered YTD in 2020.

“The S&P 500 gained 0.7% in May and 12.62% YTD, with positive figures for four consecutive months. Developed markets ex-U.S. gained 3.11% in May. Austria 8.29% and Luxembourg 8.12% were the leaders for the month while New Zealand lost the most at 3.92%.  Emerging markets were up 2.58% at the end of May. Hungary (up 15.54%) and Poland (up 13.98%) were the leaders, whilst Egypt (down 3.86%), Chile (down 3.64%), and Malaysia (down 2.79%) were down the most,” according to Deborah Fuhr, managing partner, founder and owner of ETFGI.

The Global ESG ETF/ETP had 620 ETFs/ETPs, with 1,834 listings, assets of US$280 Bn, from 139 providers on 37 exchanges in 30 countries. Following net inflows of $6.54 Bn and market moves during the month, assets invested in ESG ETFs/ETPs listed globally increased by 4.1% from $269 Bn at the end of April 2021 to $280 Bn at the end of May 2021.

Global ESG ETF and ETP asset growth as at end of May 2021 

Source: ETFGI data sourced from ETF/ETP sponsors, exchanges, regulatory filings, Thomson Reuters/Lipper, Bloomberg, publicly available sources and data generated in-house. Note: This report is based on the most recent data available at the time of publication. Asset and flow data may change slightly as additional data becomes available.

Since the launch of the first ESG ETF/ETP in 2002, the iShares MSCI USA ESG Select ETF, the number and diversity of products have increased steadily, with 620 ESG ETFs/ETPs and 1,834 listings globally at the end of May 2021. During May, 18 new ESG ETFs/ETPs were launched.

Substantial inflows can be attributed to the top 20 ETFs/ETPs by net new assets, which collectively gathered $4.03 Bn in May. iShares Trust iShares ESG Aware MSCI USA ETF (ESGU US) gathered $417 Mn the largest net inflows.

Top 20 ESG ETFs/ETPs by Net New Assets May 2021

Name Ticker Assets (US$ Mn) May-21 NNA (US$ Mn) YTD-21 NNA (US$ Mn) May-21
iShares Trust iShares ESG Aware MSCI USA ETF ESGU US 17,363.46 2,283.56 417.28
iShares MSCI USA ESG Enhanced UCITS ETF – Acc EDMU GY 2,683.17 1,157.93 362.63
BMO MSCI USA ESG Leaders Index ETF ESGY CN 689.00 635.05 323.95
Quadratic Interest Rate Volatility and Inflation ETF IVOL US 3,239.67 2,242.77 295.64
iShares ESG MSCI EAFE ETF ESGD US 5,842.26 1,352.77 254.12
Vanguard ESG US Stock ETF ESGV US 4,471.20 1,117.98 236.15
iShares MSCI USA SRI UCITS ETF – Acc SUAS LN 6,996.54 1,471.66 235.87
iShares MSCI USA ESG Enhanced UCITS ETF EEDS LN 910.16 568.09 225.55
iShares MSCI Europe ESG Enhanced UCITS ETF – Acc EDM6 GY 497.88 252.96 193.32
iShares ESG 1-5 Year USD Corporate Bond ETF SUSB US 940.18 425.97 179.80
JPMorgan US Research Enhanced Index Equity UCITS ETF – Acc JREU LN 331.14 136.89 172.56
iShares Global Clean Energy ETF ICLN US 5,951.09 2,676.96 171.02
KraneShares Global Carbon ETF KRBN US 379.58 331.20 144.36
iShares ESG MSCI EM ETF ESGE US 7,538.01 1,010.74 138.91
iShares MSCI EM ESG Enhanced UCITS ETF EDM2 GY 1,020.87 280.62 138.28
Fidelity Sustainable Global Corporate Bond Multifactor UCITS ETF – GBP Hdg Acc FSMP LN 329.65 320.33 125.72
Vanguard ESG International Stock ETF VSGX US 2,237.58 491.86 107.56
Lyxor Net Zero 2050 S&P Eurozone Climate PAB (DR) UCITS ETF – Acc EPAB FP 895.72 445.73 105.41
iShares MSCI USA SRI UCITS ETF USD – Acc 3SUR GY 406.03 116.33 101.69
iShares EUR Corp Bond 0-3yr ESG UCITS ETF SUSS LN 2,295.28 1,061.18 98.62

Source: ETFGI data sourced from ETF/ETP sponsors, exchanges, regulatory filings, Thomson Reuters/Lipper, Bloomberg, publicly available sources and data generated in-house. Note: This report is based on the most recent data available at the time of publication. Asset and flow data may change slightly as additional data becomes available.

Confusion persists around what constitutes an ESG fund. According to PRI, a UN-supported initiative which seeks to understand the investment implications of ESG issues, 56% of adopters believe there is a lack of clarity in ESG definitions. ETFGI’s classification system attempts to provide greater precision, with ETFs/ETPs listed globally organised into categories, including core ESG products and theme-based groups, such as Clean/Alternative Energies and Gender Diversity. Please contact deborah.fuhr@etfgi.com if you would like to discuss the cost to subscribe to any of ETFGI’s research or consulting services.