Toronto-based RBC Global Asset Management Inc. (RBCGAM) has launched RBC Vision Women’s Leadership MSCI Canada Index ETF, which began trading on the Aequitas NEO Exchange on Thursday, International Women’s day.
RBC Vision Women’s Leadership MSCI Canada Index ETF aims to replicate the performance of the MSCI Canada IMI women’s leadership select index, a broad Canadian equity markets index with a focus on companies based in Canada that exhibit a commitment toward women leadership among their board of directors and executive leadership positions. The ETF has a management fee of 0.25%.
“RBC Vision Women’s Leadership MSCI Canada Index ETF is the first ETF to join our suite of RBC Vision Funds,” says Mark Neill, head of ETFs with RBCGAM, in a statement. “It also provides investors with a solution to align their investments with their values, while at the same time rewarding companies that are focused on women’s leadership.”
RBC Vision Funds utilize exclusionary screens of responsible investing (RI) criteria for each portfolio’s holdings in order to determine each fund’s investible universe.
“In 2017, RBCGAM joined a coalition of Canada’s largest institutional investors known as the Canadian 30% club investor group,” says Judy Cotte, vice president and head of corporate governance and RI with RBCGAM, in a statement. “The group’s objective is to achieve a minimum of 30% women on the boards and at the executive management level of S&P/TSX composite index companies by the year 2022. We hope this new ETF will help bring greater focus to the issue of gender diversity at Canadian companies.”
RBCGAM announced OMERS as the lead investor of RBC Vision Women’s Leadership MSCI Canada Index ETF, with a $100-million investment.
“OMERS was founded on the belief that ‘together, we are stronger,” says Satish Rai, chief investment officer with OMERS’ capital markets division, in a statement. “That belief continues to guide us in our inclusion and diversity efforts.”
The MSCI Canada IMI women’s leadership select index aims to include companies that are leaders in Canada in terms of female representation on boards and in executive leadership positions and have at least 30% female directors, or at least three female directors, or two female directors and one woman in a current executive leadership role.
Additional criteria include that the company’s percentage of female directors on the board must be greater than the average percentage of female directors on the board of all companies in the MSCI Canada IMI index. The company also must have not faced severe structural controversies or severe ongoing diversity-related controversies.