Gender Lens Investing Q2 2023

Gender Lens Investing Q2 2023 examines second-quarter performance and composition of gender lens equity funds and provides updates on gender lens fixed income, DEI equity funds, and women in the workplace and economy. The review also includes:

A special section on the Geography of Gender Equality.

Key Findings

  • Publicly traded gender lens equity funds (GLEFs) totaled $4.3 billion in AUM as of June 30, 2023. AUM was largely flat for the group.
  • There are 21 global equity funds and 23 regional equity funds available to individual investors. These are domiciled in the U.S., Canada, the E.U., Republic of Korea, and Japan. One new fund was launched during the quarter.
  • The Parallelle Finance Scorecard is a tool for evaluating funds with an in-depth gender lens. The report includes our rankings of the GLEFs in our coverage universe as of June 30, 2023.
  • We introduce Scorecard results for several broad-market and ESG equity funds. All of the GLEF scores are higher than the broader-based funds.
  • Gender lens fixed income AUM was $14.2 billion as of June 30, 2023. Quarterly AUM growth was 9.1%
  • There were new gender bond issues announced during the quarter, including the first gender bond in Mongolia, a $500 million issuance by a Korean bank, and the third gender bond by the Asian Development Bank for women’s housing in Kazakhstan.
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) funds totaled $1.8 billion in AUM as of June 30, 2023. This growing group of funds focuses on investing in companies with robust DEI policies or social justice track records.

Figure A: 12 Largest GLEFs by AUM (in US$ millions)

As of June 30, 2023; Source: Fund fact sheets

Figure B: GLEF Top Absolute Performers. Along with the broader market, the gender lens equity funds generally traded up for the three-month period ending June 30, 2023. Figure B shows the top absolute performers for the quarter (in base currencies), as well as their weights in the top two sectors for the GLEF asset class. Relative performance was mixed, with more funds outperforming a broad market index in the 12-month period than for the quarter. A full discussion of performance and composition of the GLEF group is included in the report.