ESG Monthly archive

Jul 30, 2019
Investors discuss future of ESG engagement at Sustainable Finance Forum
In mid-June, the University of Oxford and the Rothschild Foundation sponsored the 8th Sustainable Finance Forum, an invitation-only, limited attendance, event. The forum aimed to identify ESG-related initiatives, be a networking and idea-sharing platform, showcase new initiatives and technologies to advance environmentalism, and discuss real issues surrounding issuer engagement. The Chatham House rule applied so key takeaways are highlighted without attribution....
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Jul 30, 2019
ADX issues groundbreaking set of ESG disclosure guidelines
The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) has issued a landmark set of ESG disclosure guidelines for listed companies on the bourse. The launch of the 31 KPIs is part of the ADX strategy to boost economic growth while providing a sustainable trading environment and encouraging the market to adopt societal sustainability practices. The standards aim to radically enhance ADX’s competitiveness and attract more responsible investments to the Emirate in line with ...
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Jul 24, 2019
Number of US companies appointing women to board more than doubles in a year
The number of companies appointing a woman to their board in the US has more than doubled to 85 since July 2018, thanks to a campaign by the Thirty Percent Coalition’s institutional investor members that engaged 250 companies in the past year. The coalition – whose campaign was called Adopt a Company and which represents more than a whopping $5 tn in assets under management – and the 85 companies appointing a woman to their board for the first time have clocke...
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Jul 15, 2019
The mainstream advancement of sustainable investing
Attempting to get to the bottom of – and explore further – a much-discussed issue, David Blood, co-founder and senior partner at Generation Investment Management, was asked at the recent Bloomberg Sustainable Business Summit in London: what is sustainable investing? ‘Part of the challenge of developing a sustainable investing philosophy is that there are a number of acronyms and terms people do not fully understand,’ Blood said. ‘So the way we think...
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Jul 10, 2019
Boosting equality via index inclusion
Many approaches are taken to measure diversity and equality but the benefits of being on an index – in this case, the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI) – were explored at the recent Bloomberg Sustainable Business Summit in London. The index uses a number of detailed metrics related to a company’s approach to gender equality, such as whether there are women on the board or in the CEO role, as well as wider company gender statistics, benefits, gender-conscio...
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Jul 08, 2019
Stewardship, voting and corporate scandal: Governance in Japan
The introduction of both a Stewardship Code in 2014 and a Corporate Governance Code a year later in Japan has pushed investors to focus more on the governance standards of the companies they’re invested in and forced companies to make changes – particularly when it comes to appointing independent directors to the board.  But accusations of box-ticking remai...
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Jul 05, 2019
Brexit, ESG and shareholder value: The IR Society conference 2019
The theme for the IR Society’s 33rd annual conference, held in London’s King’s Cross last month, might have been ‘IR: Leading change, driving value’ but it was Brexit, ESG and the changing nature of markets that dominated the day. The first is hardly surprising given that the UK’s seemingly ever-impending exit from the EU remains as uncertain today as it did on the original deadline back in March, while ESG and the apparently outgoing idea that shareholder valu...
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Jul 05, 2019
Putting better governance into banking
The seemingly inexorable rise of ESG factors in the investment landscape took on a new impetus this week, in particular for the banking sector. Banks will no longer be able to just pay lip service to ESG concerns – ESG factors must become a central strategic consideration in the boardroom as ESG factors become key elements of how banks are perceived, valued and invested in. Bank stakeholders are becoming increasingly aware of ESG issues, and are demanding improved...
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Jul 04, 2019
SSGA's ESG data challenge
Quality data about companies’ ESG practices is critical for effective investment analysis. The lack of standardization and transparency in ESG reporting and scoring presents major challenges for investors. Third-party ESG data providers play an important role, but there are limitations with this data – especially in terms of differing methodologies that lead to variance in scores – that asset owners should understand. Moreover, there is a lack of market infras...
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Jul 03, 2019
UK launches far-reaching Green Finance Strategy
In an attempt to cement the UK’s position as a global climate leader, the government has announced its Green Finance Strategy, which sets out plans to increase investment in sustainable projects and infrastructure. The strategy looks to ensure financial risks and opportunities from climate change are integrated into mainstream financial decision-making and increase the availability of finance to exploit this economic opportunity – by bringing together the UK’s...
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