ESG in the USA

ESG in the USA

Apr 9, 2019
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Image credit: Jon Eckert via Unsplash
Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Many American workers would like their retirement plan to include sustainable investments, but only 13 percent had access to environmental, social and governance — or ESG — investments choices in their plans, according to a Natixis Investment Managers survey.

Sixty-one percent of workers said they would “start saving or increase their investments if that also meant doing social good,” CNBC reported.

They might get more choices soon. CNBC also reported that the S&P Dow Jones Indices will launch an environmental, social and governance version of its S&P 500 Index.

“We are excited to bring to market these innovative ESG indices and scores,” said S&P Dow Jones Indices CEO Alex Matturri. “Our philosophy as an independent index provider is to offer choice to investors.”

The action attracted the interest of lawmakers.

“Are these shares being voted to drive productivity in our economy and increase investors’ return on their hard-earned investments, or are intermediaries using other people’s money unbeknownst to them in order to advance environmental, social and other political policies?” asked Committee Chairman Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, at a recent U.S. Senate Banking Committee hearing.

Others called for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Wall Street watchdog, to formulate rules to clarify ESG factors in a company or financial instrument.

“Enhancing and standardizing these disclosure requirements will merely bring the SEC up-to-date with other rules around the world,” said Senator Sherrod Brown, a Ohio Democrat.

 

Photo by Jon Eckert on Unsplash