ESG Archive

Jun 27, 2018
Sustainable investing hits key levels, survey finds
Sustainable investing – which is increasingly being used by asset managers for its potential to manage risk and drive returns – has reached a ‘tipping point’ in terms of its presence among investing processes, according to new research. The findings highlight the need for boards and governance teams to engage with shareholders on ESG issues,  particularly as they enter the proxy off-season, a time when many focus their outreach efforts. Of those poll...
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Jun 20, 2018
What MSIM looks for from engagement and boards
Drew Hambly, executive director for corporate governance with Morgan Stanley Investment Management (MSIM), speaks with Allie Rutherford, partner with CamberView Partners, about his firm’s approach to engaging with companies, ESG issues and activists. Allie Rutherford: Let’s start with the basics – can you give us an overview of how MSIM carries out its corporate governance responsibilities? Drew Hambly: MSIM has a team of five professio...
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Jun 07, 2018
Hedge funds commit billions to responsible investing, survey finds
Hedge funds globally have allocated at least $59 billion to responsible investing, according to a survey by the Alternative Investment Management Association (Aima) and the Cayman Alternative Investment Summit (Cais). The survey of 80 asset managers with a collective $550 billion in hedge fund assets under management (AUM) provides evidence of an increasing level of demand for responsible investment across the hedge fund industry, Corporate Secretary sister...
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May 21, 2018
Tackling ESG: Disconnected boards face greater risk
In this final part of the series, we explore the disconnect that remains with boards on ESG-related issues, the ‘fear of risk’ that drives shareholder engagement and the danger of producing a sustainability report that lacks substance. Our conclusions are derived from a recent Curley Global IR (CGIR) study of asset managers representing a total of more than $17 tn in assets under management. A recent Harvard Business School study finds that 82 percent of investo...
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May 18, 2018
Shareholders pass gun-safety proposal at Ruger AGM
Sturm Ruger & Company (Ruger) has lost a shareholder vote on a gun-safety proposal, an issue that has gained greater prominence in governance terms this proxy season. The proposal from the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, Oregon received 7,192,660 votes at the company’s AGM earlier this month, with 3,263,446 votes against the proposal and 124,947 votes abstaining. There were 5,072,689 non-votes. Specifically, the proposal requests that Ruger...
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May 16, 2018
Tackling ESG: Concerns about regulation and materiality
In this second part of our three-part series, we share responses from a study conducted by Curley Global IR (CGIR) that show asset managers’ deep need for companies to outline what companies believe is most material, coupled with a fear of over-regulation. We also highlight the appropriate contact point for asset managers when engaging with issuers. MATERIAL DISCLOSURES The need for material disclosure is not new; the SEC recognized...
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May 09, 2018
Tackling ESG: Investors’ messages for governance teams
Evidence of the links between returns on investment and companies’ CSR/ESG efforts is mounting exponentially, and it’s now clear: ESG is no longer just a fad. We’ve seen increasing research that outlines asset managers’ expectations of issuers, as well as data demonstrating the effectiveness of a robust CSR program and its positive impact on consumers, investors and other constituencies. We’ve also seen that enhanced shareholder scrutiny of corporate ESG p...
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May 04, 2018
Mock ExxonMobil report challenges integrated reporting critics
Two independent consultants have produced what they say is a rebuff to critics of integrated reporting: a 40-page integrated report about ExxonMobil using information from the company’s own public filings. Integrated reporting is intended to communicate a more holistic view of a company’s long-term strategy to investors by including material information that isn’t typically covered by traditional financial reporting, such as human capital, intellectual capital...
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Apr 26, 2018
What companies can learn from Amazon’s shareholder letter
By any measure, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ 4,300-word annual letter to shareowners, which was released last week, is a long document. But Bezos only devotes about half of his letter to report the company’s results.  Interestingly, the other half of the letter is devoted to a treatise on customers and high-performing staff: what defines them, how high performance is manifested, whether this skill is learned or taught, and why and how a large company should continuou...
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