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Institutional investors step up thematics despite decade of questionable performance

Institutional investors' appetites for thematic funds are growing and AUM have tripled in the past three years, reports Morningstar, which raises questions on past performance. The growing interest is partly driven by investors seeking investments of personally important ventures, says thematic investor at one of Europe's largest asset managers.

"Clients increasingly want to invest in themes which they have an intellectual and emotional connection to, and I believe that clients feel increasingly empowered to invest in areas of high importance to them," says David Docherty, investment director, thematics, at Schroders. Photo: PR / Schroders

The annual reporting from across the Nordic pension industry tells two indisputable stories: 2019 was a fantastic year for risky assets, and pension funds race to reduce the carbon footprint of their equity portfolios.

This transition towards greener equity portfolios is one of the factors which has ignited institutional interest in thematic funds, according to David Dochtery, investment director and part of the thematics teams at UK-based asset manager Schroders.

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