Covid-19 Monthly archive

Apr 29, 2020
CFOs focus on costs to mitigate financial hit of Covid-19, says survey
CFOs in the US expect ‘substantial’ impacts on their 2020 financial performance as a result of Covid-19 and are heavily focused on controlling costs to weather the crisis, according to new research.  The findings appear in the same week that companies and investors brace for official US GDP figures, which are expected to show the world’s largest economy shrunk by 4 percent in the first quarter. The regular survey of finance chiefs, conducted by PwC in ...
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Apr 20, 2020
Covid-19: The changing face of shareholder communications and the emergence of virtual IR
As a veteran investor relations professional, I returned to work on January 2, 2020 with great excitement. The Dow was hovering at or near record highs (just below 29,000), unemployment was at near record lows and the capital markets seemed poised for another strong year. Fast forward to today, the Dow is down roughly 15 percent for the year (at one point it was down almost 36 percent), more than 22 mn Americans have lost their jobs and the flow of new capital has slowed d...
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Apr 14, 2020
Covid-19 prompts buyback backlash
Who is the biggest investor on earth, in terms of equities purchased every year? One of the large sovereign wealth funds, perhaps? BlackRock? Vanguard? Berkshire Hathaway? The answer is: none of the above. The world’s largest buyers of equities are the companies that issue the shares themselves, and the ‘investment’ comes in the form of share buybacks and repurchase programs. Using their own cashflow and reinvestments, as well as a mountain of low-cost debt, i...
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Apr 07, 2020
Covid-19 response highlights shift to stakeholder value
The high number of companies stepping up to help Covid-19 relief efforts underlines the shift in corporate focus from shareholder to stakeholder value, according to a report from Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML)’s Global Research team.  The bank asked its equity analysts around the world to provide names of companies that are taking action to help with the spread of Covid 19 – and they came back with more than 400 examples.  ‘We estimate the in...
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Apr 06, 2020
Focus on stakeholder value amid Covid-19 uncertainty, investor group says
A group of 251 long-term investors representing more than $6.4 tn in assets under management has urged issuers impacted by Covid-19 to introduce measures that contribute to maintaining economic health and minimizing downside risk as the pandemic continues to spread around the world.  In an open letter from the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), the signatories – led by Domini Impact Investments, the New York State Comptroller and ICCR – urge ...
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Apr 03, 2020
ESG stocks prove their value during Covid-19 crisis
The demand of investors for companies to measure, disclose and explain their ESG credentials has come as a surprise to many corporate leaders around the globe. In the Middle East, for example, the regional legacy of strong CSR programs provided, many believed, precisely the kind of soft, non-core activity that would satisfy ESG investor demands.  Instead, many regional firms have been surprised to find themselves behind the curve, toward the back of the queue when ...
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Apr 02, 2020
ESG and engagement continue amid Covid-19, says Nuveen’s Reali
The Covid-19 pandemic has yet to have much of an impact on shareholder engagement or Nuveen’s pursuit of ESG issues, according to Peter Reali, senior director of responsible investing at Nuveen. The coronavirus outbreak has caused unprecedented disruption to daily and economic life globally in the build-up to the peak of this year’s proxy season, including forcing millions of people to work from home and practice social distancing. But Reali notes that at...
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