Viewpoint: Investors Need More and Better Data on Sustainability

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

By Graham Macmillan and Robert G. Eccles

Imagine a world in which investors didn’t have access to a company’s financial performance, or a set of accounting standards making apples-to-apples comparisons possible. In that world, how could investors make informed decisions?

That seems impossible to us now, yet that is exactly what the world was like in the U.S. before the formation of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and following the stock market crash of 1929 and the Great Depression which followed. And that’s where too many people trying to invest sustainably find themselves today.

Measurable results are central to advance sustainable finance – the kind that rewards companies being environmentally or socially responsible. That’s the theme of this week’s Private Finance for Sustainable Development (PF4SD) Week in Paris, organized by the (OECD) and launching January 15th. The goal is to bring together public and private stakeholders to weigh new approaches in using private finance to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which aim to make the world sustainable in both environmental and social terms for future generations.

Photo courtesy of reynermedia.

Source: Barron's (link opens in a new window)

Impact Assessment, Investing
ESG, global development, impact investing, SDGs