Retail trading firm Saxo Bank announced on Monday that it is partnering with Brown Advisory to provide traders with access to a selection of ‘ethical’ stocks.
The new portfolio will be available to trade on Saxo Bank’s SaxoSelect platform, a digital-only investment service that allows the firm’s clients to invest in pre-selected portfolios. The platform currently offers access to Nasdaq, Morningstar and BlackRock funds.
“More investors want their portfolios to better reflect their personal beliefs and realise that it is through their investments they can have the biggest impact on the world,” said Saxo Bank chief executive officer Kim Fournais.
“Our investments give us a strong voice and unique opportunity to influence and deliver real impact in the world we live in.”
Based in Baltimore, Brown Advisory is an investment manager which serves both private clients and institutions.
Saxo Bank’s clients will be the first group of retail traders, outside of the US, to gain access to the investment firm’s Ethical Selection portfolio.
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Traders that want access to the portfolio will also not be trading in contracts-for-difference. Instead, they will really be owning the equities listed in Brown Advisory’s portfolio.
For many traders, this is likely to be an appealing offer. Demand for equities is growing in both Europe and the US, with younger traders eagerly embracing commission-free stock trading services like Robinhood.
Brown Advisory’s portfolio is also aimed at tapping into a growing interest in ethical investments. These funds look at the environmental, social and governance (ESG) attributes of a company.
Whether there is actually any benefit to such actions, either for investors’ wallets and the environment, remains a matter of debate.
Nonetheless, Brown Advisory says that it goes into some depth to determine which companies use sustainability to create added value for investors.
“The Brown Advisory Ethical Selection strategy incorporates a multi-step ESG analysis that goes beyond negative screening, to create a concentrated portfolio of high-conviction names that we believe should provide attractive risk-adjusted returns over time,” said Tim Hathaway, portfolio manager for the firm’s ethical selection strategy.