Legg Mason launches US socially responsible fund

Sprouting-Money-Growth-Emerging-Currency-700.jpgLegg Mason Global Asset Management has launched a socially responsible US equity fund to be run by its affiliate ClearBridge Investments.

The Legg Mason ClearBridge US Equity Sustainability Leaders fund will invest in firms with “demonstrated” environmental, social and governance leadership.

The new fund will invest in various businesses across the market cap spectrum and will typically hold between 30 to 50 companies.

ClearBridge Investments, which currently runs almost $3bn (£1.9bn) in ESG strategies, will run the fund under its head of ESG Investment Mary Jane McQuillen and mid-cap specialist Derek Deutsch.

McQuillen says: “Companies with positive ESG attributes can offer some of the best opportunities to make attractive returns as they typically have a higher sustainable business focus than their peers over the long term.

“Utilising the ESG process and proprietary rating system that ClearBridge has developed over almost three decades our approach is not just about owning companies already exhibiting these characteristics, but also identifying companies striving to improve their ESG credentials.”

The fund has an annual management charge of 0.7 per cent.