Barron’s Top-Performing Sustainable Funds

January 22, 2021 – In her article “Barron’s Top-Performing Sustainable Funds,” Leslie P. Norton names Amana Growth Fund as one of several sustainable mutual funds that in 2020 “emerged as long-term winners, beating the S&P 500 over the short and long hauls.” 

Amana Growth Fund ranked third on Barron’s select list of 10 “Longtime Winners,” which Norton describes as sustainable funds that not only beat the S&P 500 index over the past year but outperformed the index over the past 10-year, 15-year, and 20-year periods. 

Barron’s annually compiles their list of top sustainable fund performers from Morningstar’s actively managed large-cap mutual fund universe. In a departure from prior years, Barron’s created a top 10 list of “long haul” standouts by applying longer-term performance screens to their 2020 list of 191 top sustainable performers. 

“With regard to the top sustainable funds on our list, this year’s average outperformance was no fluke,” said Norton. She found “funds that leaned towards sustainability and high environmental, social, and governance (ESG) ratings outperformed,” with 75% of sustainable stock funds beating their category average in 2020. 

Amana Growth Fund’s portfolio manager Scott Klimo CFA®, who was interviewed for the article, told Norton he credits the Fund’s performance to “the fact that the Fund eschews fossil fuels and financials, which bombed during the year as interest rates plunged” while the Fund’s “big tech holdings surged.” 

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Average Annual Total Returns

As of December 31, 2020 Ticker 1 Year 3 Year 5 Year 10 Year 15 Year 20 Year Expense Ratio1
Amana Growth Investor Shares AMAGX 32.86% 21.89% 20.25% 14.36% 11.83% 10.02% 0.99%
Amana Growth Institutional Shares AMIGX 33.19% 22.19% 20.53% n/a n/a n/a 0.76%
S&P 500   18.40% 14.14% 15.20% 13.87% 9.87% 7.46% n/a

1 Expense ratios shown are restated to reflect a reduction in the Advisory and Administrative Services fee, which became effective on December 1, 2020.

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Barron’s methodology

Barron’s compiled their list of 191 Top-Performing Sustainable Funds by selecting from Morningstar’s universe of 5,189 actively managed large-cap stock mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Barron’s narrowed the list by choosing funds with above-average Morningstar Sustainability ratings and all large-cap funds with sustainable mandates regardless of sustainability ratings, then ranking them by one-year returns as of December 31, 2020. For their “Longtime Winners” list, Barron’s further screened their list using performance relative to the S&P 500 index over 10, 15, and 20-year time periods as of December 31, 2020. 

Performance data quoted represents past performance which is no guarantee of future results. Investment return and principal value of an investment will fluctuate so that an investor's shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Current performance may be higher or lower than performance data quoted. Standardized returns current to the most recent month-end can be obtained by visiting our Month-End Returns Page or by calling toll free 1-800-728-8762. 

The Amana Growth Fund limits the securities it purchases to those consistent with Islamic and sustainable principles. This limits opportunities and may affect performance. Diversification does not assure a profit or protect against a loss in a declining market.

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