NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--BlackRock, Inc. (NYSE:BLK) has expanded its suite of Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG)-related products with the launch of iShares MSCI ACWI Low Carbon Target ETF (NYSE:CRBN). The new fund which seeks to track the results of the MSCI ACWI Low Carbon Target Index and addresses two dimensions of carbon exposure – carbon emissions and fossil fuel reserves – started trading on the New York Stock Exchange on December 9, 2014.
CRBN is designed for individuals and institutions interested in environmental sustainability without divestment and provides transparency to the carbon footprint of their investments. By overweighting companies with low carbon emissions relative to sales and those with low potential carbon emissions per dollar of market capitalization, it aims to maintain exposure to global equity, while accounting for carbon exposure. Relative to the standard ACWI index, the underlying holdings to the CRBN index produce 81% less carbon emissions and 97% less potential carbon emissions from fossil fuel reserves.
Daniel Gamba, head of BlackRock's iShares Americas Institutional Business, said, “We see a growing demand from global investors who are seeking to invest in way that can have a positive impact on the broader economy without potentially sacrificing returns and to be able to do so with the ease, access and efficiency of an ETF. With iShares MSCI ACWI Low Carbon Target ETF, we are helping investors to look at socially responsible investing through the lens of long-term investment returns and in the process helping them to take action with their portfolios. This is particularly relevant for official institutions, pensions, foundations and endowments who are interested in pursuing environmental sustainability strategies without divestment.”
Carol Boykin, CFA, Representative of the Secretary-General for the investment of the assets of the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund, said, “As we consider the impact of climate change worldwide, as highlighted by the UN Secretary-General at his Climate Summit on 23 September, it is clear that investors are now paying close attention to the risk posed to their investments by climate change. The United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund welcomes the creation of a new lower carbon index and related ETFs as a responsible approach to environmentally sustainable investing and a positive response to the Secretary-General’s call for action.”
Sam Gallo, Chief Investment Officer of the University System of Maryland Foundation, said, “Being able to address socially responsible concerns while maintaining our fiduciary standards is critical to our investment approach. The iShares MSCI ACWI Low Carbon Target ETF is a low-cost, investment solution that allows us to maintain full exposure to global equities while incorporating a carbon exposure reduction strategy.”
Baer Pettit, Managing Director and Head of the Index Business at MSCI, said "Socially responsible investing increasingly influences many of our clients' investment strategies. We are pleased that iShares has again selected MSCI to meet its need for an innovative index."
The MSCI Global Low Carbon Target Index re-weights stocks based on their carbon exposure in the form of carbon emissions and fossil fuel reserves. The index is designed to achieve maximum carbon exposure reduction given a specific tracking error target. The MSCI Global Low Carbon Target Index is based on the MSCI ACWI Index, the global policy benchmark covering developed and emerging markets, and utilizes MSCI ESG CarbonMetrics data from MSCI ESG Research Inc.
BlackRock's commitment to social investing spans asset classes and enables investors to access investment strategies that target a reasonable risk-adjusted rate of return in addition to positive and measureable social or environmental outcomes. The firm managed $257 billion in social investing products as of the end of June 2014, up from $215 billion as of June 30, 2012.1
BlackRock is a leader in investment management, risk management and advisory services for institutional and retail clients worldwide. At September 30, 2014, BlackRock’s AUM was $4.525 trillion. BlackRock helps clients meet their goals and overcome challenges with a range of products that include separate accounts, mutual funds, iShares® (exchange-traded funds), and other pooled investment vehicles. BlackRock also offers risk management, advisory and enterprise investment system services to a broad base of institutional investors through BlackRock Solutions®. Headquartered in New York City, as of September 30, 2014, the firm had approximately 12,100 employees in more than 30 countries and a major presence in key global markets, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East and Africa. For additional information, please visit the Company’s website at www.blackrock.com | Twitter: @blackrock_news | Blog: www.blackrockblog.com | LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/blackrock
iShares is a global leader in exchange-traded funds (ETFs), with more than a decade of expertise and commitment to individual and institutional investors of all sizes. With over 700 funds globally across multiple asset classes and strategies and more than $1 trillion in assets under management as of September 30, 2014, iShares helps clients around the world build the core of their portfolios, meet specific investment goals and implement market views. iShares funds are powered by the expert portfolio and risk management of BlackRock, trusted to manage more money than any other investment firm.
Carefully consider the Funds' investment objectives, risk factors, and charges and expenses before investing. This and other information can be found in the Funds' prospectuses or, if available, the summary prospectuses which may be obtained by visiting www.iShares.com or www.blackrock.com. Read the prospectus carefully before investing.
Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal. Transactions in shares of the iShares Funds will result in brokerage commissions and will generate tax consequences. iShares Funds are obliged to distribute portfolio gains to shareholders. Shares of the iShares Funds may be sold throughout the day on the exchange through any brokerage account. However, shares may only be redeemed directly from a Fund by Authorized Participants, in very large creation/redemption units.
International investing involves risks, including risks related to foreign currency, limited liquidity, less government regulation and the possibility of substantial volatility due to adverse political, economic or other developments. These risks often are heightened for investments in emerging/developing markets and in concentrations of single countries.
The iShares MSCI ACWI Low Carbon Target ETF may not reflect a lower carbon exposure as there is no guarantee that the underlying index will achieve its intended results or accurately assess an issuer's actual and potential carbon emissions.
As of December 9, 2014, iShares MSCI ACWI Low Carbon Target ETF (NYSE:CRBN) began participating in the NYSE Arca ETP Program on its listing market, NYSE Arca. While the impact of participation in the NYSE Arca ETP Incentive Program, which is optional, cannot be fully understood until objective observations can be made in the context of the NYSE Arca ETP Incentive Program, potential impacts on the market quality of CRBN may result, including with respect to the average spread and average quoted size for CRBN. Learn more at: http://www.ishares.com/us/products/liquidity-incentive-programs
The Funds are distributed by BlackRock Investments, LLC (together with its affiliates, “BlackRock”).
The iShares Funds are not sponsored, endorsed, issued, sold or promoted by MSCI Inc., nor does this company make any representation regarding the advisability of investing in the Funds. BlackRock is not affiliated with MSCI Inc.
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1 Source: BlackRock