By continuing to browse the site, you are agree on the use of cookies to track the number of visits.To know more about cookies policy:click here
06 Nov 2017

Mind the gender gap


Stay ahead of the investment curve with gender equality-focused companies

217 years is the time it will take to close the economic gap between men and women, according to the World Economic Forum’s annual Global Gender Gap Report –released on the 1st of November 2017. Families, communities, companies and countries are all paying a tremendous price for this inequality, with the global gender pay gap sitting at a staggering 59% (1). We know that lower pay for women and their lower participation in the workforce has a profound impact on the entire global economy. Recent figures estimate that women being paid less than men, and their concentration in unpaid, minimum wage and insecure work, costs the global economy $9 trillion a year. (2)

Guest Blogger

Diana van Maasdijk

Diana van Maasdijk

Equileap Co-Founder & Executive Director

​On the flip side, if women played an identical role in labour markets to men, as much as $28 trillion or 26% could be added to global GDP by 2025. (3) Equileap’s mission is to accelerate gender equality in the workplace. We believe this is a neglected, but effective lever to reduce poverty and inequality and to boost the performance of companies and national economies. We want to see much quicker progress towards gender parity than the current figures suggest, not just because it’s clearly the right thing to do, but also because it’s just as clearly the smart thing. Equileap has focused on creating innovative, sustainable and exciting ways to tap into companies that seek to address the gender imbalance to shareholders’ and employees’ equal advantage.

The main markers of progress

Investors cannot change what they cannot see, but as more data becomes available on corporate practices, there are four clear areas where we can now assess what progress companies are making on gender equality compared to their peers.  

1. Diversity at all levels, including senior management, executive and non-executive board members. This also includes fair promotion and development opportunities.


  1. 1. Diversity at all levels, including senior management, executive and non-executive board members. This also includes fair promotion and development opportunities.

  2. 2. Primary and secondary carer leave, flexible work options and fair pay for fair hours, wages and benefits are all important.

3.  Policies can apply in areas from training and recruitment to work safety and supply chain diversity.


4. Independent gender-focused audits and a recognition of the value of women’s empowerment at work.


Set the agenda for future generations

There are three strong factors driving investor interest in the companies that work to tick those four boxes.Regulation: Tackling gender inequality in the private sector is quickly rising in the legislative agenda, helped along by industry-backed initiatives such as the Women in Finance Charter. Gender equality is also one of the top three UN Sustainable Development Goals investors are focusing on. (4)

Sustainability: Long-term investors are quickly realising the potential opportunity for companies which are ahead of this curve. Multiple researchpapers have highlighted how gender equality impacts significantly companies’ long-term future and their bottom line. (5)

Performance: Over six years, the Equileap Global Gender Equality Index outperformed the MSCI World Index by 10.7%. (6) ESG-based ETFs have proved popular in Europe this year, attracting €2bn in new assets, and increasing AUM to €5.8bn. (7) 

Help us redress the balance

At Equileap, we are focused on identifying the companies, sectors and countries leading the field in terms of gender equality. We know there is a long way to go: in the 2017 edition of the Equileap Global Report no company out of 3,048 scored more than 22 out of 35 points. But together, we can reward companies that do well and incentivise others to do better.

What you need to know

The Lyxor ETF ELLE is based on the Equileap Global Gender Equality Index, designed with Solactive. It uses 19 criteria to select a list of the 150 most liquid and gender equality-friendly companies from a database of more than 3,000 firms in 23 developed countries. The 19 criteria are based on four categories: a gender balance in leadership and workforce; equal compensation and work life balance; policies promoting gender equality; commitment to transparency and accountability.

Our family of indices provide transparent, diversified ways to access companies that prioritise gender equality. They are equal weighted and rebalanced annually in September. The Equileap Global Gender Equality Index has been live since 3 April 2017, and back-tested to 30 September 2011.

Find out more about Lyxor Global Gender Equality (DR) UCITS ETF

References 

(1) http://reports.weforum.org/global-gender-gap-report-2017/key-findings/
(2) https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/oct/25/gender-pay-gap-170-years-to-close-world-economic-forum-equality
(3) https://www.mckinsey.com/global-themes/employment-and-growth/how-advancing-womens-equality-can-add-12-trillion-to-global-growth
(4) PRI and ShareAction publication, Transforming our World through Investment, 2016
(5) http://equileap.org/research-papers/                                                                                                                                                                  (6) Bloomberg, daily data from 30/09/2011 to 29/09/2017
(7) Lyxor International Asset Management. Data as of October 2017

Risk warning 

 It is important for potential investors to evaluate the risks described below and in the fund prospectus which can be found on www.lyxoretf.com

CAPITAL AT RISK: ETFs are tracking instruments: Their risk profile is similar to a direct investment in the Underlying Index. Investors’ capital is fully at risk and investors may not get back the amount originally invested. 

REPLICATION RISK: The fund objectives might not be reached due to unexpected events on the underlying markets which will impact the index calculation and the efficient fund replication. 

COUNTERPARTY RISK: Investors are exposed to risks resulting from the use of an OTC Swap with Societe Generale. In-line with UCITS guidelines, the exposure to Societe Generale cannot exceed 10% of the total fund assets. Physically replicated ETFs may have counterparty risk resulting from the use of a Securities Lending Programme. 

UNDERLYING RISK: The Underlying Index of a Lyxor ETF may be complex and volatile. When investing in commodities, the Underlying Index is calculated with reference to commodity futures contracts exposing the investor to a liquidity risk linked to costs such as cost of carry and transportation. ETFs exposed to Emerging Markets carry a greater risk of potential loss than investment in Developed Markets as they are exposed to a wide range of unpredictable Emerging Market risks. 

CURRENCY RISK: ETFs may be exposed to currency risk if the ETF is denominated in a currency different to that of the Underlying Index they are tracking. This means that exchange rate fluctuations could have a negative or positive effect on returns. 

LIQUIDITY RISK: Liquidity is provided by registered market-makers on the respective stock exchange where the ETF is listed, including Societe Generale. On exchange liquidity may be limited as a result of a suspension in the underlying market represented by the Underlying Index tracked by the ETF; a failure in the systems of one of the relevant stock exchanges, Societe Generale or other market-maker systems; or an abnormal trading situation or event.

This document is for the exclusive use of investors acting on their own account and categorized either as “eligible counterparties” or “professional clients” within the meaning of Markets in Financial Instruments Directive 2004/39/EC. It is not directed at retail clients. In Switzerland, it is directed exclusively at qualified investors. 

Some of the funds described in this communication are sub-funds of either Multi Units Luxembourg or Lyxor Index Fund, being both investment companies with Variable Capital (SICAV) incorporated under Luxembourg Law, listed on the official list of Undertakings for Collective Investment, and have been approved and authorised by the CSSF under Part I of the Luxembourg Law of 17th December 2010 (the “2010 Law”) on Undertakings for Collective Investment in accordance with provisions of the Directive 2009/65/EC (the “2009 Directive”) and subject to the supervision of the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF). Alternatively, some of the funds described in this document are either (i) French FCPs (fonds commun de placement) or (ii) sub-funds of Multi Units France a French SICAV, both the French FCPs and sub-funds of Multi Units France are incorporated under the French Law and approved by the French Autorité des marchés financiers. Each fund complies with the UCITS Directive (2009/65/CE), and has been approved by the French Autorité des marchés financiers. Société Générale and Lyxor AM recommend that investors read carefully the “risk factors” section of the product’s prospectus and Key Investor Information Document (KIID). The prospectus and the KIID are available in French on the website of the AMF(www.amf-france.org). The prospectus in English and the KIID in the relevant local language (for all the countries referred to, in this document as a country in which a public offer of the product is authorised) are available free of charge on lyxoretf. com or upon request to client-services-etf@ lyxor.com. The products are the object of market-making contracts, the purpose of which is to ensure the liquidity of the products on NYSE Euronext Paris, Deutsche Boerse (Xetra) and the London Stock Exchange, assuming normal market conditions and normally functioning computer systems. Units of a specific UCITS ETF managed by an asset manager and purchased on the secondary market cannot usually be sold directly back to the asset manager itself. Investors must buy and sell units on a secondary market with the assistance of an intermediary (e.g. a stockbroker) and may incur fees for doing so. In addition, investors may pay more than the current net asset value when buying units and may receive less than the current net asset value when selling them.Updated composition of the product’s investment portfolio is available on www. lyxoretf.com. In addition, the indicative net asset value is published on the Reuters and Bloomberg pages of the product, and might also be mentioned on the websites of the stock exchanges where the product is listed. Prior to investing in the product, investors should seek independent financial, tax, accounting and legal advice.It is each investor’s responsibility to ascertain that it is authorised to subscribe, or invest into this product. This document together with the prospectus and/or more generally any information or documents with respect to or in connection with the Fund does not constitute an offer for sale or solicitation of an offer for sale in any jurisdiction (i) in which such offer or solicitation is not authorized, (ii) in which the person making such offer or solicitation is not qualified to do so, or (iii) to any person to whom it is unlawful to make such offer or solicitation. In addition, the shares are not registered under the U.S Securities Act of 1933 and may not be directly or indirectly offered or sold in the United States (including its territories or possessions) or to or for the benefit of a U.S Person (being a “United State Person” within the meaning of Regulation S under the Securities Act of 1933 of the United States, as amended,and/or any person not included in the definition of “Non-United States Person” within the meaning of Section 4.7 (a) (1) (iv) of the rules of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.). No U.S federal or state securities commission has reviewed or approved this document and more generally any documents with respect to or in connection with the fund. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offence. This document is of a commercial nature and not of a regulatory nature. This document does not constitute an offer, or an invitation to make an offer, from Société Générale, Lyxor Asset Management (together with its affiliates, Lyxor AM) or any of their respective subsidiaries to purchase or sell the product referred to herein.These funds include a risk of capital loss. The redemption value of this fund may be less than the amount initially invested. The value of this fund can go down as well as up and the return upon the investment will therefore necessarily be variable. In a worst case scenario, investors could sustain the loss of their entire investment. This document is confidential and may be neither communicated to any third party (with the exception of external advisors on the condition that they themselves respect this confidentiality undertaking) nor copied in whole or in part, without the prior written consent of Lyxor AM or Société Générale. The obtaining of the tax advantages or treatments defined in this document (as the case may be) depends on each investor’s particular tax status,the jurisdiction from which it invests as well as applicable laws. This tax treatment can be modified at any time. We recommend to investors who wish to obtain further information on their tax status that they seek assistance from their tax advisor. The attention of the investor is drawn to the fact that the net asset value stated in this document (as the case may be) cannot be used as a basis for subscriptions and/or redemptions.The market information displayed in this document is based on data at a given moment and may change from time to time. Authorizations: Lyxor International Asset Management (Lyxor AM) is a French management company authorized by the Autorité des marchés financiers and placed under the regulations of the UCITS (2009/65/EC) and AIFM (2011/61/EU) Directives.Société Générale is a French credit institution (bank) authorised by the Autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de résolution (the French Prudential Control Authority.

Research disclaimer

This material reflects the views and opinions of the individual authors at this date and in no way the official position or advices of any kind of these authors or of Lyxor International Asset Management and thus does not engage the responsibility of Lyxor International Asset Management nor of any of its officers or employees. This research is not an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security in any jurisdiction where such an offer or solicitation would be illegal. It does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients. Clients should consider whether any advice or recommendation in this research is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if appropriate, seek professional advice, including tax advice. Our salespeople, traders, and other professionals may provide oral or written market commentary or trading strategies to our clients and principal trading desks that reflect opinions that are contrary to the opinions expressed in this research. Our asset management area, principal trading desks and investing businesses may make investment decisions that are inconsistent with the recommendations or views expressed in this research.

 © 2016 LYXOR INTERNATIONAL ASSET MANAGEMENT ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Connect with us on linkedin