ESG Archive

Jun 17, 2020
Canadian business leaders launch anti-racism project
A group of senior Canadian businesspeople has launched a new council and initiative aimed at increasing racial diversity among the country’s boards and executive teams. The move comes amid growing calls for governments and companies to address racial inequality following the deaths of African Americans including Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd. The Canadian Council of Business Leaders Against Anti-Black Systemic Racism, which is launching what it ca...
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Jun 16, 2020
How Covid-19 can shape boards’ thinking on ESG
The novel coronavirus pandemic has intensified investors’ focus on ESG practices as the outbreak has disrupted global supply chains and affected human capital management practices. This is building on what was already a growing interest among investors in ESG issues, as reflected in shareholder proposals and investment patterns over the last few years. Morningstar data shows that in the first four months of this year, investors poured roughly $12.2 billion into ES...
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Jun 12, 2020
The week in GRC: Companies make racial justice pledges, and activists target corporate leaders
– The Financial Times reported that US civil rights groups have received a wave of donations from companies since Minneapolis police killed George Floyd. The FT found more than $450 million in pledges to groups focused on social and racial justice, which usually depend more on individual donations, often from people in disadvantaged communities. For example, Walmart and its fo...
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Jun 12, 2020
Influential proposal providers face uncertainty
On May 21, 1971, shareholders at General Motors’ (GM) annual general meeting voted on an unusual resolution put forward by the Episcopal Church. Shareholders were asked to consider whether GM should withdraw its workforce from South Africa entirely, given that ‘many potential GM customers, employees and dealers here and abroad’ would be offended by the policy of apartheid. The resolution received support from 1.29 percent of the company’s shareholders – including...
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Jun 04, 2020
Companies urged to spell out their purpose
New survey finds most respondents want corporate purpose aligned with UN sustainability goals Investors expect companies to describe their purpose and report on its implementation, according to new research. The findings come as issuers use the idea of corporate purpose to help steer them through the difficult decisions thrown up by the Covid-19 pandemic.  The study, by shareholder advisory firm SquareWell Partners, finds that around three quarters of...
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May 27, 2020
Canadian investors to maintain climate focus amid Covid-19
Canadian institutional investors plan to maintain their focus on climate change despite the upheaval caused by Covid-19, according to new research. Although the pandemic is the top concern for investors right now, climate change remains a key issue and companies should prepare for a continuation of ‘challenging questions’ on the subject, the report from ESG consultancy Millani notes. The study, which surveyed the views of 23 Canadian institutions with a c...
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May 27, 2020
US mid-caps warm to stakeholder value
US mid-cap companies are focusing on more than just shareholder returns by increasing the integration of ESG factors into their business performance planning, according to new research. In a survey of 400 middle-market executives, 74 percent say formulating plans to develop and appropriately compensate employees is important, followed by 70 percent who emphasize the importance of providing value to customers. Delivering results to investors rounds out the top three ...
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May 18, 2020
ESG reporting in a crisis: A luxury firms cannot afford?
When Saudi Aramco announced its Q1 earnings recently, media attention was firmly on the announced lower profits and the maintenance of the oil giant’s large dividend. What was less remarked upon was the fact that around 25 percent of the Q1 earnings press release concerns itself not with financials or commentary on financial performance; no, the final quarter of the release focuses on a ‘Covid-19 Update’. And this update consists of the following: how we are p...
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