Eurex implements global ESG investing with new MSCI index-based derivatives

The new futures using MSCI ESG Screened Indexes was introduced to start trading in time for the next roll in March. The futures covering USA, World, EM, EAFE and Japan/Growth in MSCI index-based derivatives driven by buy-side demand.

In the spirit of responsible investing, Eurex supports asset managers in switching to sustainable investment by expanding its ESG division and broadening the range of ESG derivatives reaching markets outside of Europe. Five new Eurex futures from today cover sustainable versions of key regional and global MSCI benchmarks.

MSCI index-based derivatives trading is one of the fastest growing sections at Eurex. The number of client businesses driven by institutional investors has almost doubled during the last two years and now makes up 27 % of the turnover. Eurex’s MSCI index-based derivatives offering is the most extensive offering tradable on a single platform worldwide. Eurex currently lists 120 MSCI index-based futures and 20 MSCI index-based options. The total open interest amounts to approximately 2.5 million contracts, making it the highest MSCI index-based derivative-related open interest in the world.

Michael Peters, Member of the Eurex Executive Board commented:

Michael Peters

Our aim is to set the agenda in ESG and to offer investors the greatest possible flexibility in their global ESG investments.

Carolyn Weinberg, Global Head of Products for ETF and Index Investments at BlackRock said:

The new Eurex ESG futures reflect the growing demand for sustainable benchmarks on a global scale. The transparency of sustainable indexing methodologies empowers financial markets participants to articulate their risk preferences. The extension into derivatives is significant as sustainable indices are used as financial instruments.

The underlying MSCI ESG Screened Indexes adhere to a negative ESG screening or exclusions methodology, reflecting investors’ most common concerns. The methodology aims to help in avoiding stocks that carry reputational risk and are considered controversial. As a result, it weeds out components from a standard MSCI benchmark – such as controversial weapons companies, tobacco manufacturers or thermal coal companies, including companies not complying with UN Global Compact Principles.

George Harrington, Global Head of Futures and Options Licensing at MSCI, added:

We are excited to continue building our strategic relationship with Eurex in relation to this diverse and innovative range of ESG indexes.

Alex Kieft, Head of Trading at Flow Traders noted:

Provision of market liquidity is paramount. With this in mind, we are delighted to be supporting from the outset the roll-out of Eurex ESG derivatives to additional global markets.

Eurex announced the addition of new ESG derivative in the beginning February. The launch of STOXX USA 500 ESG-X Index futures follows a year of successful ESG trading.

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