ESG Focus Enhances REIT Performance, Investment Strategist Says

Scott Crowe, chief investment strategist at CenterSquare Investment Management, was a guest on the latest edition of Nareit’s REIT Report podcast.

Crowe spoke about environmental, social and governance (ESG) trends within the REIT sector, and how CenterSquare’s own analysis of ESG matters has changed during the past two decades.

While governance has always been at the center of CenterSquare’s strategy, in the past few years attention on the environmental and social aspects of ESG has increased in response to growing client interest, Crowe explained.

“There’s a lot of interest in ESG and it’s growing. Investors are increasingly moving away from just talking about ESG to establishing ways to invest behind ESG,” Crowe said.

Crowe noted that CenterSquare’s analysis confirms that by incorporating ESG matters into the REIT selection process, investors can enhance their returns.

“For companies that take ESG seriously, not only is there an economic benefit…but they also tend to own newer assets, which have higher returns,” Crowe noted.