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Investing for a sustainable future

The pursuit of sustainability

We believe the needs of the present can be met without compromising the ability of future generations.

Sustainability is a well-established investment theme. Thirty-five years ago, a report entitled ‘Our Common Future’ was published by the United Nations. It highlights that “the pursuit of sustainability requires major changes in international economic relations.”

'The world’s estimated financial needs for achieving the SDGs are between US$5 trillion and US$7 trillion a year1.

Major changes have taken place, spurred by the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals encompassing issues such as energy consumption, social justice, biodiversity, and economic growth.

We help clients understand the environmental, social, and governance (‘ESG’) implications of investments, combining their financial objectives with their sustainability preferences. Providing expertise, tools and access to sustainable investment solutions.

Today, sustainable investment is going mainstream, with more investors a focusing on generating long-term financial returns while contributing positively to the environment and society.

There is much still to be done. We support our clients on their sustainability journey.

Sustainability opens up a world of opportunity

Sustainable investments are no longer considered the choice of specialist investors and have become mainstream. Enjoying recent rapid growth and opening up a world of opportunity for investors who look to benefit from the long-term growth that companies with strong ESG credentials can provide.

HSBC believes the transition to a sustainable economy is a multi-decade investment opportunity

Evidence shows that companies with better Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) credentials were more likely to show high profitability.3 Companies that manage ESG risks create value for stakeholders and are more likely to survive economic cycles.

The graph below shows the relative performance of the S&P 500 compared to the S&P 500 environmental and socially responsible index over the five-year period to January 2022.

ESG equity index outperformed the wider market

Source: Bloomberg, HSBC Global Private Banking as at 2 February 2022. Past Performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.

1 Source: UNA-UK, 

3 Source: NYU Stern: Centre for Sustainable Business: ESG And Financial Performance: Uncovering the Relationship by Aggregating Evidence from 1,000 Plus Studies Published between 2015 – 2020 


Integrating ESG in a diversified portfolio

Our sustainable investment approach starts with understanding your financial objectives.

We see three main ways to embed sustainability into an investment portfolio, which can be applied across portfolio allocations:

ESG Enhanced: Invest in companies based on relative ESG performance

This covers a spectrum of approaches such as ESG tilting or positive screening, to intentionally invest in companies based on relative ESG performance or momentum.

Thematic: Focus on themes and sectors dedicated to resolving climate and sustainability challenges

This covers strategies that focus on ESG related growth areas and trends, by seeking out companies or sectors that align with specific sustainable outcomes.

Impact: Focus on a direct, positive and measurable impact on society and/or the environment

This covers strategies that aim to deliver intentional, direct and positive environmental and or social impact. 

To support our clients in their sustainability journey, we offer a full range of sustainable and impact investing solutions:

Managed Solutions

Sustainable investment funds, ETFs, discretionary mandates & Impact Alternative investments

Capital Markets

Fixed Income (such as Green, Social Sustainability-Linked bonds), Equities, Structured Products

Research & Insights

Comprehensive coverage of ESG insights publications

Group Solutions

Access to commercial banking, global markets and asset management capabilities

Wind Turbines

Speak to your Relationship Manager to find out

more about HSBC Sustainable Investments.

Industry initiatives


Joined the UK Sustainable

and Finance Association


Signatory to the Principles

for Responsible Investment


Joined Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change


Signatory to the Montreal Carbon Pledge


Launched ClimateAction100+ initiative in collaboration with other investors


Founding member of One Planet Asset Manager Initiative supporting the One Planet Sovereign Wealth Fund Working Group


Founding signatory of the Finance for BiodiversityPledge


Founding member of Finance to Accelerate the Sustainable Transition infrastructure (FAST- Infra) Signatory of the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative

Awards & recognition

HSBC is committed to publishing regularly updated information on its ESG performance. The achievements have been recognised in receipt of awards including:

HSBC Global Research

award winning Climate Change Centre of Excellence

Middle East’s Best Bank for Sustainable Finance

(Euromoney, 2019, 2020, 2021)

Improved MSCI ESG rating to AA

(‘ESG Leader’), recognising our strong corporate governance and commitment to sustainable finance (2021)

Western Europe’s Best Bank for Sustainable Finance

(Euromoney, 2020)

World’s Best Bank for Sustainable Finance

(Euromoney, 2019, 2020)

Five Lead Manager of the Year

awards across social, sustainability and green bond categories (Environmental Finance, 2020)

Asia’s Best Bank for Sustainable Finance

(Euromoney, 2019, 2020, 2021)

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