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Responsible Investing

One year old stewardship code covers $100 billion FUM

One year after its launch New Zealand’s Stewardship Code has 18 signatories holding over $100 billion in assets.

Thursday, September 28th 2023, 10:03AM

by Andrea Malcolm

Stewardship is defined as the responsible allocation and management of investor capital to create and preserve long-term value for current and future generations.

The New Zealand’s investment community developed the code to give investors a framework for using their influence to steer companies in their portfolios on critical environmental, social and corporate governance issues.

Code secretariat Jackson Rowland says climate change is the main area of signatory focus, followed by modern slavery. “Signatories are also releasing dedicated stewardship reports to align with the code, showing a clear commitment to the code.”

Rowland says the level of uptake in the first year is an exceptional outcome, demonstrating the high levels of commitment from Kiwi investors to prioritising a long-term sustainable approach. 

‘Stewardship is about maximising long-term value for current and future generations, and the fact that most of New Zealand’s assets under management have committed to stewardship is a really positive sign for Kiwis.’

The founding signatories are ANZ, ASB, BNZ, Castle Point, Devon Funds, Harbour Asset Management, Kiwi Wealth, Metrics, Milford, Northern Trust Asset Management, NZ Super Fund, Russell Investments, SALT, Trust Management, Westpac. Nikko Asset Management, Mint Asset Management and Pathfinder have since come on board.

Devon Funds Management managing director Slade Robertson, says its stewardship practices include voting, monitoring, and engaging with companies on matters including strategy, performance, corporate governance, decarbonisation, and social outcomes. “It is our fiduciary duty to encourage companies to produce better outcomes for their investors and communities.” 

ESG research manager at Harbour Asset Management Jorge Waayman says, stewardship has always been a core part of the firm’s responsible investing approach and can be a powerful lever for creating positive, real-world changes that benefit a wide set of stakeholders across current and future generations.

In practice, the code provides a useful framework to guide what good looks like in stewardship and helps hold signatories accountable to promote integrity and mitigate greenwashing, he says.
New Zealand’s investment community developed the code to be New Zealand specific, mapping the principles against existing regulatory requirements and key international codes (including the UK 2020 Code), and took into consideration local market and cultural context. Signatories are encouraged to consider Te Ao Māori and other cultural aspects when applying the code's principles, says Rowland.

« Makao takes a step to boost analytics on sustainabilityFMA releases final record keeping guidance for climate reporting »

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AIA - Back My Build 6.19 - - -
AIA - Go Home Loans 8.74 7.14 6.75 6.39
ANZ 8.64 7.74 7.39 7.25
ANZ Blueprint to Build 7.39 - - -
ANZ Good Energy - - - 1.00
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ASB Bank 8.64 7.14 6.75 6.39
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BNZ - Classic - 7.14 6.79 6.65
BNZ - Green Home Loan top-ups - - - 1.00
BNZ - Mortgage One 8.69 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 8.69 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 8.69 7.74 7.39 7.25
BNZ - TotalMoney 8.69 - - -
CFML Loans 9.45 - - -
China Construction Bank - 7.09 6.75 6.49
China Construction Bank Special - - - -
Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - 6.79 - -
Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 8.40 6.99 6.79 6.65
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Co-operative Bank - Standard 8.40 7.49 7.29 7.15
Credit Union Auckland 7.70 - - -
First Credit Union Special - 7.45 7.35 -
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Heartland Bank - Reverse Mortgage - - - -
Heretaunga Building Society 8.90 7.60 7.40 -
HSBC Premier 8.59 - - -
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - - - -
ICBC 7.85 7.05 6.69 6.59
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Kainga Ora 8.64 7.74 7.35 6.99
Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - - - -
Kiwibank 8.50 7.99 7.79 7.55
Kiwibank - Offset 8.50 - - -
Kiwibank Special - 6.99 6.79 6.65
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SBS Bank 8.74 7.74 7.09 6.95
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SBS Bank Special - 7.14 6.49 6.35
SBS Construction lending for FHB - - - -
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TSB Special 8.64 6.99 6.75 6.65
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Westpac Offset 8.64 - - -
Westpac Special - ▼6.89 6.75 6.39
Median 8.64 7.14 6.82 6.65

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