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Christian Super adopts asset stewardship code

Christian Super adopts asset stewardship code

Reporter
— 1 minute read

Christian Super has become the latest super fund to sign up to Australian Council of Superannuation Investors’ (ACSI) Asset Owner Stewardship Code.

On 18 May, InvestorDaily reported that ACSI had released a code for asset owners that laid out principles for managing and disclosing stewardship activities.

Industry funds AustralianSuper, Hesta and VicSuper have already signed up to the code so far, with Hostplus set to become a signatory by the end of the year.

ACSI announced in a statement on Thursday that Christian Super had become the latest super fund to voluntarily adopt the code.

“We’re seeing a number of asset owners who don’t want to wait until next year to begin providing more information about their stewardship activities,” ACSI chief executive Louise Davidson said.

“By signing the code, Christian Super is making it easier for its beneficiaries to see what the fund is doing to protect and enhance long-term value.

“This is a strong basis from which to build trust and set the tone for stewardship in Australia.”

Christian Super chief executive Ross Piper said the industry fund was “proud” of its heritage in ethical investing.

“For many years core principles underpinning faithful stewardship have been embedded into the investment policies and processes at the fund, and we continue to learn and strengthen our practice in this regard.

“We are delighted to become a signatory to the Australian Asset Ownership Stewardship Code and are grateful to ACSI for their efforts in coordinating the code,” Mr Piper said.

Signatories to the code will have to provide a ‘stewardship statement’ by September 2019 that lays out how it adheres to the code’s principles.

The six principles of the code are:

  • Publicly disclose how they approach their stewardship responsibilities;
  • Publicly disclose their policy for voting at company meetings and voting activity;
  • Engage with companies either directly, indirectly (for example, via collective action or third-party providers) or both;
  • Monitor asset managers’ stewardship activities;
  • Encourage better alignment of the operation of the financial system and regulatory policy with the financial interests of long-term investors; and
  • Report to beneficiaries about their stewardship activities.

Christian Super has 27,000 members and $1.4 billion funds under management, 10 per cent of which goes to investments that aim to generate positive social or environmental outcomes as well as financial returns.

 

Christian Super adopts asset stewardship code
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