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Plato unveils net zero global equities strategy

By Yasmine Masi1 February 2022

Plato Investment Management has launched a global equities fund managed with a net zero carbon footprint, the first of its kind in the Australian funds management industry.

The Plato Global Net Zero Hedge Fund seeks to outperform the MSCI World Index and maintain a net zero carbon exposure using the calculation methodology recommended by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.

The fund is an active extension long/short strategy that focuses on high carbon emitting companies through short positions but takes long positions in companies with above average carbon footprints.

Dr Don Hamson, Managing Director of Plato Investment Management, said the fund offers a ‘net zero now’ option for investment portfolios.

“We believe the race to net zero emissions will be the most important investment thematic over the next 30 years, and we think this unique strategy provides a way for investors to achieve net zero now, while gaining exposure to the greatest economic transition we’ll likely see in our lifetimes,” he said.

“Climate change is an issue that our team and many of our clients feel strongly about and through the Plato Global Net Zero Fund we will be able to actively play a bigger part in driving corporate change while having the ability to starve polluters of capital by shorting the most egregious emitters.”

The fund will be co-managed by Dr David Allen Plato, who is also Plato Investment Management’s Head of Long/Short Strategies, and Charles Lowe.

Allen said the strategy will take advantage of Plato’s established proprietary quantitative systems and the integration of hundreds of new ESG data points.

“We know an average sized SMSF invested in the ASX 200 requires 3135 trees to get to net zero, so I think this new fund is a game-changer for those who want a simple solution to help them generate alpha while maintaining a net zero carbon footprint,” he said.

“Importantly the strategy is underpinned by Plato’s proprietary quantitative systems which have been delivering strong outcomes for more than 15 years for investors ranging from self-funded retirees to superannuation funds.”

Since its inception on September 1 2021, the Plato Global Net Zero strategy has returned 8.29%, outperforming the benchmark by just under four percent.

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