Opinion

On ESG Investing, The Economist Offers The Right Diagnosis But A Faulty Prescription.

Michael Posner

By Michael Posner

By Michael Posner

The Economist published an eight-part series last month on ESG investing. Introduced in 2004, the ESG framework (environment, social and governance) allows investors to evaluate companies based on factors that go beyond their financial returns.

Well researched and smartly written, this series offers a clear and convincing critique of the current ESG framework, which now affects how more than $35 trillion in assets are invested.

As The Economist rightly points out, “measurement of ESG data needs a big overhaul,” in part because “there is little clarity about what ESG raters intend to measure and what their methodologies are.” As the magazine accurately observes, marketers of ESG investments who claim that they inevitably outperform the overall market are peddling “a myth,” as “very often there are tradeoffs.”

Read the full Forbes article.
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Michael Posner is the Jerome Kohlberg Professor of Ethics and Finance, Professor of Business and Society and Director of the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights.