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UBS embraces ESG with private wealth pivot

Lachlan Maddock
— 1 minute read

One of the world’s largest investment banks has announced that its US$2.6 trillion global wealth management business will now prioritise sustainable investments.

UBS has announced that sustainable investments are now its preferred solution for private clients investing globally – making it the first major global financial institution to make the recommendation. 

“COVID-19 has put the exclamation point on one of the most important shifts in financial services in a generation,” said UBS co-president of global wealth management Tom Naratil.

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“The pandemic has brought the vulnerability and interconnected nature of our societies and industries to the forefront of investors’ minds and shown that sustainability considerations cannot be ignored.”

UBS believes traditional investments will remain “most suitable in some circumstances” but that a 100 per cent sustainable portfolio can deliver similar or higher returns, with major sustainable indices performing better than traditional equivalents over the last year. They also offer stronger diversification for clients investing globally. 

“Sustainable finance is a firm-wide priority for UBS and our aim is to help clients take advantage of new opportunities and manage 21st-century risks more smartly,” said Huw van Steenis, chair of UBS’s Sustainable Finance Committee and senior adviser to the CEO. 

“As sustainable finance has moved into the mainstream, it is a critical component for clients and a strategic growth opportunity for UBS.”

 

UBS embraces ESG with private wealth pivot
Tom Naratil
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