Human Resources

Socially Responsible Investing

New Portfolio Management for Socially Responsible Global Investment Fund - October 2016

In concert with Western's plan to improve pension operations and services for members by consolidating a number of services at Sun Life Financial Western also moved to a new advisor for the Socially Responsible Global Investment Fund - MFS Investment Management.  On October 1, 2016, MFS replaced Aberdeen Asset Management which has managed the fund since March 2008.

Aberdeen’s performance in this equity fund had fallen short of expectations in the past few years, underperforming significantly against the market and their benchmark.  The Joint Pension Board made a decision to investigate and evaluate alternative managers (nine managers were reviewed), and selected MFS as the best provider for Western members.  Some of the reasons:

The MFS fund is well diversified by sectors and they seek to invest in companies that have:

It is to Western’s advantage that the MFS fund is already on the Sun Life core platform, so no additional administrative set up is required.

Members may wish to consider continued or new investment in this fund.  The screens are similar to those used by Aberdeen, and involve screening out companies that generate more than 10% of their revenues from the manufacture of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, the manufacture or sale of weapons, gambling operations and production or trade of pornography. They also eliminate companies with poor labour practices and poor environmental track records.

For more information contact Martin Bélanger, Director, Investments at or call extension 80314.