By Susan Hely,
, April 2010
If you believe renewable energy such as solar, wind, thermal, wave and natural gas is set for rapid growth, here’s a retail managed fund called Global Smart Energy fund from Australian Ethical.
A Canberra-based fund manager, Australian Ethical is a “dark green” ethical fund that has been around for 24 years. It has repositioned its International Equity Trust to invest in global sustainable energy companies as well the technology companies that support the industry, such as electric vehicles, recycling and smart grids.
There’s a compelling case for investing in renewable energy sources as countries clamour for ways to cut back on fossil fuels. This year $US500 billion is being spent on various ways to cut carbon emissions throughout the world, says the portfolio manager of Global Smart Energy at Australian Ethical, Ursula Tonkin.
Among the fund’s top 10 investments are Shimano, a cycling component company; geothermal giant Ormat Technologies; solar power group SMA Solar Technology; Dutch bicycle maker Accell; and Norwegian recycling group TOMRA Systems.
It also invests in Interface, which makes carpet out of recycled materials; Itron, the smart meter group; and Vestas, the largest wind turbine manufacturer in the world.
Performance figures don’t reflect the fund’s new renewable energy structure, but the former assets held by the international fund. Over the past year the fund was up 5.8% compared to 11.9% for the MSCI World index.
Tonkin says it has been a tough year for renewable energy as European countries such as Germany and France pulled back their spending. She is very positive about growth prospects for the medium to long term.
It’s a unique retail opportunity for investors to invest in not only the booming renewable energy sectors, but the technologies and industries that support them. Minimum investment is $20,000 and it’s good to see a discount on your fees if you invest electronically. The standard non-electronic fee is 3.6% and the electronic fee is 2%. Australian Ethical has dedicated, experienced renewable energy analysts that have been covering solar, wind, geothermal, public transport and natural gas for several years.
For more on your money, see Money in April. Out now.
Money Magazine's April 2010 issue is out now. Subscribe now.
Keep reading - next article