Toronto-based Wealthsimple Inc. has officially entered the ETF space with the launch of two responsible investing funds after filing a prospectus earlier this year.
“Canadians are increasingly interested in investment options that reflect their values, and there haven’t always been a lot of great options for them,” says Michael Katchen, co-founder and CEO of Wealthsimple, in a statement explaining why the firm decided to create its own “socially responsible funds.”
Wealthsimple North America Socially Responsible Index ETF invests primarily in Canadian and U.S. equity securities. It is designed to replicate the Solactive Wealthsimple North America Socially Responsible Factor Index. The fund’s management fee is 0.2%.
Wealthsimple Developed Markets ex North America Social Responsible Index ETF focuses on equity securities in Europe, Asia and Australia. The fund is meant to replicate the Solactive Wealthsimple DM ex NA Socially Responsible Factor index. The fund’s management fee is 0.25%.
The funds are designed to exclude companies from controversial industries such as weapons and tobacco while also screening for a company’s carbon emissions.
The funds began trading today on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
This is not Wealthsimple’s first foray into the socially responsible investing space. The robo-advisor began offering third-party responsible investing ETFs in 2016.
Toronto-based Mackenzie Investments will act as trustee, manager and portfolio manager of the funds.
Mackenzie Investments is part of IGM Financial Inc., a subsidiary of Power Corp. The Montreal-based corporation also owns a majority share in Wealthsimple.