Even smaller companies need in-house counsel

I can’t help quoting the wisdom of Adam Epstein – here’s his latest: One thing I know immediately upon confronting any small-cap company without in-house counsel: they probably have the wrong lawyers, and, worse, they’re paying them too much.

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“Impact” matters

Here’s an excerpt from this note from Harald Walkate: I think this may be the most bizarre ESG chart I’ve seen in a long, long time. I found it in the Moral Money newsletter and see that it was produced by HSBC. The accompanying text is: “Why do fund managers bother drawing up an ESG…

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A shortage in ESG talent…

This article from “Insider” covers a wide range of issues, including the ESG talent shortage. The article includes clips from interviews with ESG professionals, some of whom talked anonymously to Jordan Locke. Here’s an excerpt of recruiter Jordan Locke’s comments: “This is probably tied more closely to the challenge of this build-out of ESG and…

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Shareholder proposal proponents are posting their remarks online

I’m surprised that this doesn’t happen more often. That a shareholder proponent posts the remarks that they intend to deliver at the annual meeting in advance in an attempt to gain support for their proposal. Here’s a note from Bob Eccles with one example of this: Here is the speech that Tim Youmans, lead-North America…

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Does sustainability truly cut the cost of capital?

– It’s not so clear-cut whether sustainability increases or reduces the cost of capital. But it may seem that this doesn’t matter. – It’s hard to estimate the cost of capital, at least for equity capital. The expected returns that shareholders expect when they buy a stock are unknown. We know the realized actual returns…

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The latest on ESG shareholder engagement

Here’s an excerpt from this note by Rob Bauer about this panel video: Check out the video on our panel on stewardship and engagement during the 2022 Oxford Sustainable Finance Summit (it is 90 minutes but well worth the listen). It was an interesting, fun and rich conversation with the panelists and the OSFS 2022…

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Companies signing the UN’s PRI don’t seem to improve their ESG

Here’s a paper from Soohun Kim and Aaron Yoon that has been updated recently that continues to show not a whole lot of observable follow-through among PRI signatories. Here’s the abstract for the paper: The United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) is the largest global ESG initiative in the asset management industry to date.…

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The economic impact of ESG ratings

Here’s a note from Florian Berg about this paper from Florian, Florian Heeb and Julian Kolbel: Research questions: How strongly do ESG ratings affect financial markets? And how much positive real-world impact do they have? The paper is joint work with Florian Heeb and Julian Kölbel. We examine the impact of ESG ratings on mutual…

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Corporate climate targets falling short of 1.5°C goals

Here’s the news from this “ESG Today” article: Corporate emissions reduction targets globally are falling well short of the requirements to limit temperature increase to 1.5°C and to avoid the most significant effects of global warming, according to a new study released today by climate research provider and environmental disclosure platform CDP and management consulting…

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