Lyxor launches Europe’s first gender equality ETF

Through this ETF, investors can access the 150 companies that rank highest for gender equality in the world. According to a study by the World Economic Forum, it would take another 218 years to achieve perfect gender equality if we maintain our current pace. Using ETFs, investments can be mobilized to companies that are the most committed to this cause and help accelerate their progress.

The ETF market currently represents €600 billion and is still growing. Socially responsible investments only represent €5.8 billion but their flow doubles every year (reaching €1.6 billion as of October 2017). Given this context, ETFs can be used as a tool to jumpstart investments that are socially conscious. While liquid, with a small initial investment level and low management fees, ETFs are above all a transparent tool. This feature that fits well with the principle of responsible investing.

To design this first gender equality ETF, Lyxor has joined forces with Equileap, a Dutch NGO devoted to gender equality in the workplace. Their database contains over 3,000 companies in 23 countries, and their rating system goes beyond the traditional criteria of having women on boards of directors, management boards and executive committees. Each company of their database is ranked according to four key categories:

  • Gender balance in leadership and workforce,
  • Equal compensation and work/life balance
  • Policies promoting gender equality
  • Commitment to women’s empowerment

WOMEN IN THE BANKING SECTOR

To mark International Women’s Day 2017, Laure Quennouëlle-Corre, Research Director at the CNRS, and Sabine Effosse, University Professor (Paris Nanterre), share their view of the role of women in the workplace. This also provides an opportunity to mention their upcoming international symposium on “Women who count” to discuss the progress made by women in the banking and financial sector since the 19th century.