• Institute for Sustainable Investing

A Powerful New Tool Provides Insights to Sustainable Investors

How can investors gain insight into the impact of their investment portfolios? Our Morgan Stanley Impact Quotient tool distills complex data and tailors analysis to you.

When it comes to investments, we all have the same question: How am I doing? Thanks to global financial market infrastructure, we are able to know how any investment–whether a stock, bond or other financial instrument–is performing at nearly any time, from any place and on any screen of our choice.

Investors interested in impact and sustainable investing, however, are asking another question that has long gone unanswered: Are my investments aligned with my impact goals?

A lack of standardized metrics—coupled with competing frameworks for measuring impact—has historically made this question difficult to answer. And as with their financial goals, each investor has a unique set of impact priorities. Whether those are climate change, gender equality or access to education, the challenge is not only gathering the right data, but tailoring insights to an investor’s unique objectives. With three-quarters of individual investors expressing an interest in sustainable investing, according to a Morgan Stanley survey, the demand for impact data and transparency has reached a critical scale. 

Enter Morgan Stanley Impact QuotientTM, otherwise known as Morgan Stanley IQ, a new application that aims to solve this challenge by putting a client’s unique preferences at the center of the analysis in three ways:

First, it provides clients with a comprehensive framework to identify and prioritize over 100 social and environmental impact preferences. 

Second, it harnesses the insights of multiple third-party data sources and proprietary Morgan Stanley analytics to instantly assess the alignment of investments with those unique impact preferences. 

Finally, it equips Morgan Stanley Financial Advisors with suggestions for investment solutions that may better align clients’ portfolios over time with the impact preferences that matter most to them.

Currently available to clients of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, Morgan Stanley IQ offers a new lens with which to view investment portfolios. Supplementing traditional financial reporting and analysis, the application can provide transparency and suggestions across three distinct dimensions of impact:

  • Exposure: Which investments are exposed to the sectors, issues or business practices a client seeks to avoid?
    For example, Morgan Stanley IQ can shed light on investments in companies with a track record of human rights violations or involvement in the sale of tobacco or firearms.
  • Alignment: Which investments are positively aligned with a client’s social and environmental impact objectives?
    Through a holdings-based analysis, Morgan Stanley IQ can highlight investments across a range of themes, such as companies that provide access to healthcare, are working to reduce their carbon footprint or make gender diversity a priority.
  • Activation: What portion of a portfolio is invested in intentional impact strategies?
    Based on proprietary asset manager surveys, Morgan Stanley IQ can identify which third-party investment managers take an intentional approach to impact and sustainable investing, including a focus on particular social and environmental issues or United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. 

Layered together, these three lenses can offer investors, both individuals and institutions, deeper clarity into their current investment holdings and a data-driven approach to further integrating social and environmental objectives across their investment portfolios. 

To learn about the alignment of your own investment portfolio, ask your Financial Advisor about Morgan Stanley Impact QuotientTM.


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