S&P launches renewables, water indexes


Standard & Poor’s (S&P) has launched a new index series to cover the clean energy, water and infrastructure sectors.

"Clean energy, water and infrastructure have evolved as major investing themes," said David Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the index committee at S&P, a US-based financial services agency.

The S&P Global Clean Energy Index is made up of the 30 largest stocks selected from 10 countries, with clean energy as either a significant part, or the primary focus, of their business.

Roughly one third of the index is made up of energy generators, with technology and equipment providers accounting for the remaining two thirds. For example, the biggest constituent, making up 6.35% of the index, is US firm MEMC Electronic Materials, which manufactures silicon wafers for the semi-conductor industry. Dutch wind turbine manufacturer Vestas Wind System is the second biggest component, at 6.28% of the index.

According to S&P, the index would have returned 27.35% over the last year, compared to 17.44% for the S&P Global 1200 Index and 3.44% for the S&P Global 1200 Energy Index.

Using similar criteria for inclusion, the S&P Global Water Index is made up of the 25 largest water utilities and infrastructure stocks, and 25 water equipment and materials companies. Its biggest component is French environmental services company Veolia.

Investors tracking the index over the last year would have made 27.34%, compared to 17.44% for the S&P Global 1200 Index or 30.50% for the S&P Global 1200 Utilities Index.

Meanwhile, the S&P Global Infrastructure Index includes 75 companies, from 22 countries, in three "clusters" around transportation, utilities and energy.

The Global Thematic Index Series may expand to include other sectors in the future, Blitzer said.

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