GERMANY – Union Investment, the funds arm of Germany’s ‘genossenschaftlicher finanzvervund’ (association of cooperative financial institutions) has entered into agreement with the country’s 11 church banks (Banken für Kirche Caritas and Diakonie) to launch two new sustainable investment funds.

The equity and bond funds, named ‘KCD-Union equity sustainable DJSG-Index fund’ and the ‘KCD-Union Bond-plus sustainable DJSG-Index fund’ are both based on the Dow Jones sustainability group index.

Union Investment says it aims to surpass the equity fund’s benchmark through an active stock-picking policy and Thomas Meier, manager of the equity fund notes that he is currently attracted to stocks such as Nokia, Johnson & Johnson and EMC.

The bond fund will incorporate a 20% weighting in corporate bonds, reflecting the proportion of corporate paper in the Dow Jones sustainability index.

Union Investment has worked with the church banks for over 30 years and currently a total of around e1bn is managed in seven funds.