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Top Ethical Investing News for November 2017
Links may only be valid a limited time Commentaries by Ron Robins
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Responsible investors have burning questions about cannabis. "Determining whether marijuana is a responsible investment depends on several fundamental factors that should be discussed with an investment professional versed in ESG analysis."
How can you rate the ESG performance of cannabis stocks? This is becoming
an important question for numerous ethical investors and advisors. In this
article, Dustyn Lanz (chief operating officer of Canada's Responsible
Investment Association) provides a good overview of many of the points to
ESG investing and smart beta combination grows in popularity. "A survey by FTSE Russell shows nearly half (46 per cent) of global asset owners have an allocation to smart beta, and 41 per cent of those using it or considering its use anticipate applying ESG considerations."
Again, more proof that global asset managers are utilizing ESG criteria.
European pension funds ramp up responsible investments. "Six in 10 investors plan to increase their allocations to responsible investments over the next three years. The same proportion is concerned about the impact of scandals on the value of their holdings, according to a survey by Create-Research, the consultancy."
Contrast the finding in this survey with that below where "82%
[of advisors] also
believe responsible investing has a long way to go before it becomes
mainstream." Advisors are well behind institutional investors in
their understanding of ESG!
Responsible Investing Strategies Still a Challenge for Advisers--Q4 2017 Eaton Vance Advisor Top-of-Mind Index (ATOMIX) survey of 1,000 financial advisers. "Only 21% of advisers surveyed reported feeling very well informed about responsible investing strategies, and the survey found accessing ESG data is a challenge for advisers...
Eighty-four percent of advisers reported their clients have at least some interest in responsible investing options. However, 82% also believe responsible investing has a long way to go before it becomes mainstream."
[COMMENTARY] The data in this survey clearly demonstrate -- yet again -- how out-of-touch are most financial advisors. Is it a simple case of 'I just don't want to bother?' Clearly, they aren't fulfilling their most important goals of 'knowing their client' and acting in the client's best interests.
the fact that about $1 in $5 in the US equity markets is now invested
according to responsible investing principles appears to be unknown to the
advisors surveyed. That fact alone says that it's already becoming
mainstream -- and fast.
Top 10 brands with the best green supply chains. "The latest rankings on international brands' environmental performance in the China supply chain was jointly released by the Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs (IPE) and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).
The rankings are based on the Corporate Information Transparency Index (CITI), which collects public data on areas including government compliance, online monitoring, confirmed public complaint records, self-reporting and third-party environmental audits.
This year's ranking evaluated 267 international brands that run businesses in China. A total of 25 Chinese brands were ranked among the top 100."
Apple, Dell, and Levi's are the top three companies.
EU considering sustainable investing as fiduciary duty for investors. "The European Union’s executive has decided to start work on an impact assessment to assess whether and how such a clarification could contribute to a more efficient allocation of capital, and to sustainable and inclusive growth."
Various advisory groups to the EU are deeply concerned about the
short-term focus of fund managers at the expense of long-term issues that
are largely ESG related. It's likely the EU will formally clarify its
policy and incorporate the importance of ESG measures in its guidelines.
That'll be good news for all investors.
Advisors Failing To Talk ESG With Clients. "According to a recent study by Allianz Global Investors, only 14 percent of 1,061 investors with at least $100,000 in investable assets who were surveyed had had a conversation with their advisors about ESG investing, and 61 percent of the clients had to bring up the subject themselves."
Is it that advisors don't keep up-to-date about investment performance --
so can plead ignorance about the generally comparable and good results of
ESG investing -- or are they purposefully withholding important
information from their clients? And, if so, why? I suspect it has mostly
to do with not creating more work for themselves and present
fees/commission arrangements. Tell me if I'm wrong. Anyway, they're not
fulfilling what should be their number one mandate to know and do their
best for their clients!
Just released: new surveys related to ESG investing.
[COMMENTARY] It's clear that the mainstream investment industry is adopting ESG criteria as important to investment analysis and attracting millennials to investing. However, I remain skeptical about much of the surveys' findings due to the definition of ESG and what people say and do being two quite different things. Also, some surveys seem to contradict each other in their results.
surveys have just been released on the
McKinsey: ESG No Longer Niche as Assets Soar Globally. "More than a quarter of the $88 trillion assets under management globally are now invested according to environmental, social and governance principles known as ESG, a McKinsey & Co. study found."
McKinsey doesn't seem to be referring to original work as the figures
they're quoting appear largely from published works such as the 2016
Global Sustainable Investment Review. Perhaps they should state their
sources. Anyhow, it's terrific they're engaged in promoting ESG!
The Greening of Asia: The Business Case for Solving Asia's Environmental
Emergency, by Mark L. Clifford, Columbia University Press, 2015.
Note: Articles are linked to the original source. Some sites might require registration, and may, or may not, archive stories. All links were active at the time of publication.
Disclaimer: Neither The Soul Investor nor Ron Robins makes investment recommendations. Nothing in this newsletter should be interpreted as a recommendation or solicitation to buy/sell any securities or investments. The Soul Investor is a source of general information and resources for spiritual investing, ethical investing, and socially responsible investing (SRI). Investors should consider their actions thoroughly and consult their professional advisers prior to taking any investment action. The Soul Investor does not necessarily agree with the opinions expressed in articles in its newsletter or offered on the web pages to which it might be linked. Such opinions are the responsibility of the writers themselves. Furthermore, The Soul Investor does not offer or provide any warranties, representations, guarantees, implied or otherwise, as to the accuracy, legality, copyright compliance, timeliness or usefulness of the information, materials or services in this e-newsletter, or other sites, to which it might be linked. Also, Mr. Ron Robins is not an investment advisor, nor is he licensed with any professional investment related body, and thus is not able to, nor does he make, any investment recommendations.
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