Seventy-five percent of U.S. asset managers in a new survey said their firms had adopted sustainable investing, up from 65% in 2016.
Nine of out of 10 asset managers agreed that sustainable investing was no longer a fad, and nearly two-thirds said they expected it to continue to grow in the next five years.
At present, $12 trillion, or one-quarter of U.S. assets under professional management, employ sustainability principles, according to recent research.
The survey, from the Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing and Bloomberg, polled 300 respondents at U.S. asset management firms with at least $50 million in client assets.
“The survey results demonstrate that sustainable investment strategies are now a strategic imperative,” Matthew Slovik, head of global sustainable finance at Morgan Stanley, said in a statement. “It is clear that asset managers will continue to invest new resources and expand their product portfolios in the coming years.”
Respondents said high client satisfaction, investment stability, product popularity and possible high financial returns were key factors driving success in sustainable investing.
But even as they recognized the strategy as a business imperative, nearly all asset managers in the poll stressed the need for increased expertise, better data and impact reporting to ensure future success in the space.