Survey - Result
If the Swiss population is questioned about what expectations they have of a pension fund, then financial security and good returns are cited first and foremost. However, it is also apparent that the majority also support issues drawn from the environmental, social and corporate governance fields if they are explicitly asked about this.
The study’s most important findings are:
- Pension fund members in Switzerland are interested in knowing how and where the pension fund invests their money.
- An overwhelming majority (72%) of insured persons want their investment fund to pursue investment strategies that are more sustainable.
- 73% of questioned pension fund members are of the opinion that sustainable investment strategies lead to more circumspect investment decisions that are more successful in the long term (79%).
In overall terms, ESG factors in pension fund investment processes are strongly welcomed in Switzerland. When specifically asked about this topic, it was apparent that this was important to respondents, while only a small number expressed opposition. However, when asked open questions without reference to ESG factors, only a very few aspects were cited in this direction.
This shows that the topic is masked by concerns about financial security and pension protection. In order to win the hearts and minds of the sceptics in the Swiss population for the integration of ESG factors in pension fund investment processes, it will be necessary to refute the argument that a sustainable strategy has a negative impact on yields.
For Michael Baldinger, CEO of RobecoSAM, the remit issued by insured persons to their pension funds is clear:
“72% of questioned pension fund members in Switzerland want their pension fund to take financially-relevant ESG aspects into account when making investment decisions. In addition, pension fund members are firmly convinced that taking ESG criteria into account leads to more circumspect investment decisions that are better in the long term. We have shared this view ever since our company was founded, and strive to create corresponding investment solutions in partnership with pension funds.”