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Data: Morningstar; Chart: Axios Visuals

There are $1.83 trillion of European assets in sustainable investment funds, per Morningstar. In the U.S., by contrast, the number is just $300 billion.

Why it matters: There's no sign of the United States catching up in the foreseeable future. Total inflows into European sustainable funds were $112 billion in Q2, compared to less than $18 billion in America.

How it works: The history of European sustainable fund mandates is decades old, especially in the Nordic countries and the Netherlands. Professionals at large institutional investors like pension plans and insurance companies consider ESG mandates to simply be a necessary part of any responsible long-term investment shop.

  • European regulators are also pushing hard for further disclosure and regulatory mandates, both at the EU level and at the country level.
  • European banks like UBS have announced that sustainable funds will be the default option for private-wealth clients.

The big picture: Broadly speaking, the slowest part of the investment world to move into sustainable investing has been retail investors. The U.S. investment universe is much more based in retail, which helps (in part) explain why America is so far behind Europe.

  • Under new European rules, financial advisers will have to ask clients what their sustainability preferences are. That's likely to drive increased retail participation in both active and passive sustainable funds.
  • So far, no such mandates seem likely in America.

The bottom line: The investments are always greener on the other side of the pond.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Oct 6, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Natural gas rides the roller coaster as policy ideas fly

Photo: Angel Garcia/Bloomberg via Getty Images

European gas prices soared again today to fresh records, but then began falling after Russian President Vladimir Putin signaled Russia would boost supply — gyrations that come as European Union officials struggle with the immediate crisis and how to prevent the next one.

Driving the news: European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said EU leaders will discuss creating a strategic natural gas storage reserve, per S&P Global Platts and other outlets.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
1 hour ago - Economy & Business

Peloton stock tanks on report of production halt

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Peloton stock fell by as much as 25% on Thursday, following a CNBC report that the connected fitness company will temporarily halt production on its bikes and treadmills.

Why it matters: Peloton is viewed by many as a proxy for consumer behavior in the pandemic era, as its popularity surged when gyms closed and people wanted to exercise at home.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Omicron pushes COVID deaths toward 2,000 per day — The pandemic-proof health care giant.
  2. Vaccines: No evidence that healthy children, teens need boosters, WHO says — Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America.
  3. Politics: Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older.
  5. Variant tracker