In response to growing expectations that companies must show leadership in ESG, we have expanded our strategy offerings to include the Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) portfolio.
Assets in global sustainable funds were $2.24 trillion at the end of September, according to Morningstar Direct, and we are meeting this market opportunity with the first ESG-oriented savings program in the banking industry.
The newly-launched diversified ESG portfolio comprises iShares “ESG Aware” ETFs, that seek to select and overweight ESG companies and avoid certain non-ESG assets.
ESG stands for environmental, social, and governance. These three categories have certain standards for a company so investors can screen potential investments to align them with their beliefs.
- The environmental standards consider how a company safeguards the environment, including corporate policies addressing climate change.
- The social standards examine how a company manages relationships with employees, suppliers, customers, and the communities where it operates.
- Lastly, the governance standards deal with a company’s leadership, executive pay, audits, internal controls, and shareholder rights.
We believe that responsibly constructed portfolios should not only benefit the world, but also the investor, so our ESG portfolio utilizes the same sophisticated, rules-based investment techniques as the original Save Global Diversified Markets portfolios. Additionally, it maintains a similar global multi-asset class approach, while utilizing ESG-focused ETFs and avoiding investments in certain commodities like agriculture and livestock.
The ETFs that make up our ESG portfolio select companies deemed acceptable under specific environmental, social, and governance rules.
Additionally, limiting the effects of climate change is the responsibility of every industry, including banking. In addition to this new investment strategy, we support tree-planting projects in collaboration with Reforest’Action. To promote and participate in the restoration of forests, we are underwriting the planting of a tree for every $5,000 deposited in any Market Savings term. This will plant about 20,000 trees in upstate New York. An initial photo from the planting site is below.
Forests are the world’s largest carbon sink and forest ecosystems support 80% of the world’s biodiversity. Planting trees has many benefits, including improving the climate, biodiversity, health, and employment. Our sponsored trees are in Cobleskill, NY on a former organic dairy farm. Chestnut, hazelnut, red oak, acadia, persimmon, and black walnut are the varieties of trees that will limit soil erosion and improve air and soil quality.
“Consumers are increasingly turning to ethical choices in all aspects of life including investments, and with no ESG savings accounts available in the banking market, we jumped at the opportunity to deliver this new kind of sustainable and responsible investment offer,” said Michael Nelskyla, Founder and CEO of Save. “We recognize that investors have a role to play in improving the human impact on major issues such as climate and Save sees it as our fiduciary responsibility to offer ethical investing through our Market Savings program for those consumers who seek these choices.”
The new ESG portfolio is available to customers through our Portfolio Recommendation tool during the Market Savings signup. Our Market Savings program is FDIC insured1 and currently earns 7.60%-9.24% APY2 depending on the program term.
1 To obtain FDIC insurance coverage, customer funds provided will be deposited into non-interest-bearing accounts at Webster Bank. FDIC insurance coverage for funds deposited at Webster Bank is limited to not more than $250,000 per depositor, per FDIC-insured bank, per ownership category. Actual deposit insurance coverage may be lower if you have other funds deposited at Webster Bank, N.A. Customers are responsible for determining the amount deposited in each account at Webster Bank, N.A., and for monitoring the total amount of their deposits at Webster Bank, N.A., to determine the extent of available FDIC insurance coverage in accordance with FDIC rules. Learn more at: https://www.fdic.gov/deposit/deposits. Only the funds customers provide and deposit with Webster Bank, N.A., will be eligible for FDIC insurance. Webster Bank is not providing any investment advice or responsible for the purchase or performance of any investment contracts. The funds held in the Apex Clearing Corporation accounts are not FDIC-insured, are not bank guaranteed, and may lose value with a minimum return of zero. Maximum balance and transfer limits apply. Neither Save Advisers, LLC., nor its affiliates, are a bank. Apex Clearing Corporation is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (“SIPC”), formed by Congress to protect “customers” of broker-dealers and to promote public confidence in the U.S. securities markets. Customers of a SIPC Member that fails financially are afforded certain benefits under the Securities Investor Protection Act (“SIPA”). These benefits are relevant only if the broker-dealer that “carries” a customer’s account fails and is liquidated under SIPA. At Apex Clearing Corporation, your investments are protected by SIPC up to a maximum of $500,000 total, including $250,000 in cash balances. Coverage limitations apply. To learn more about SIPC coverage, visit the SIPC website at www.sipc.org.
2 APY, or annual percentage yield, is the yearly return on a bank or investment account. Save ‘Market Savings’ offers the potential to earn an APY with a variable rate (Variable APY). APY is derived from the investments made by Save on behalf of the customer within Save’s portfolio of strategies over the duration of term length selected by the customer. The Variable APY will never be less than the Minimum APY of 0% per annum but could be equal to the minimum APY of 0% per annum. The APY is equal to the cumulative return for the term selected on the applicable maturity date. Assuming a minimum APY of 0% per annum, if the APY applicable to a particular maturity date is less than or equal to the Minimum 0%, the customer will not receive any APY return for that investment upon maturity. Variable APY’s are subject to change at any time. APY is not guaranteed. The APY presented is hypothetical in nature and reflects the potential growth that could accrue if the investment is held for the entire term selected. Minimum deposit is $1,000. The deposit account portion of the Save Market Savings product and service is provided by Webster Bank, N.A., Member FDIC; and is non-interest bearing with a 0% APY. Management Fees associated with the investments may reduce earnings on the account. Customer withdrawal prior to maturity could result in additional associated costs.