MSCI ESG Now Podcast Banner
ESG Now page header
ESG now podcast
Subscribe to Our Podcast:
Subscribe to Our Podcast:
ESG Now Podcast Top Article
Episode 129 - The ESG Weekly: A Union at Amazon and France Bnas Flights
Amazon workers have voted down a union drive at the company's Alabama warehouse. The victory was decisive, and it the loss signals a change in the corporate labor market. We discuss what that paradigm shift is, as well as some good old discussion about Amazon as an economic force. Then we discuss the move by the French government to try and ban short‐haul flights in order to cut the country's carbon footprint.
Episode 128 - The ESG Weekly: Opioids Rage During COVID-19 and Politics in Georgia
The COVID-19 pandemic has overshadowed the opioid epidemic in the US, but the opioid crisis in the US has grown during the pandemic creating more problems for communities and companies that have been blamed for the crisis. During the 2021 proxy season, companies are disclosing more opioid related liabilities to shareholders causing dissent in some cases. We discuss both the opioid epidemic and these shareholder reactions. Then, as a new controversial voting rights law is passed in the US state of Georgia, we discuss why some companies wade into politics and others stay away.
Episode 127 - The ESG Weekly: The ESG of Marine Shipping and Shadow Investing
A ship blocked the entire Suez Canal! To honor that, we discuss the ESG of marine shipping, the industry that handles 90% of the world's shipping. And then we discuss how billion‐dollar leverage bets by a family investment office called Archegos exposed a major systemic risk in the banking industry.
Episode 126 - The ESG Weekly: Hydrogen and Heavy Industry
Industries like and steel and cement are some of the most important sectors and largest emitters of carbon dioxide. This is due both to the molecular makeup of their products and a possible lack of effort in finding viable low-carbon solutions. In this episode we discuss if hydrogen, the molecule that helps power the sun, can help lower our industrial emissions.
Episode 125 - The ESG Weekly: Online Education in China and Antibiotics in Fast Food
Most of the largest online education companies are based in China. As the industry gets larger, so too does pushes for regulation and concern that companies are spending more on advertising than they're on educating their students. We discuss what this might mean for the industry's future. And then we discuss the push by Yum! Brands to eliminate antibiotics from its massive meat supply chain.
Episode 124 - The ESG Weekly: Women Reduce Emissions and Voices from Homes
New research about sustained board gender diversity suggests that companies with more people that identify as women demonstrated a stronger track record on reducing carbon emission than their sector peers. We discuss this finding and what it means for the future of board gender diversity. Then we hear from five primary care givers about how they have fared during the pandemic.
Episode 123 - The ESG Weekly: The Pay is Very High and Oil Spills on Rigs
How a company sets CEO pay is an important function of its board of directors. When its effective, pay can align a CEOs interests with the strategic goals of the companies it runs. When its ineffective, CEOs can take home millions while their company flounders and fails. In this episode, we discussed new research on how effective CEO pay has been between the years of 2006 to 2020. And then we discuss whether oil rigs are safer now than in the past.
Episode 122 - The ESG Weekly: Sustainability‐Linked Bonds Hit the Scene and Amazon Gets a New Executive Chair
As Schneider Electric and LafargeHolcim issue their first sustainability‐linked bonds, we ask how to tell apart a marketing exercise from a genuine effort to improve. And for Amazon, the transition of founder and CEO, Jeff Bezos into the role of executive chair may have kicked up more questions than answers.
Episode 121 - The ESG Weekly: Energy Grid Resiliency and GM's EV Push
As Texas continues to suffer from power outages caused by a rare cold front, we discuss how energy grid resiliency plays an important role in preparing for the effects of climate change. And then we discuss the feasibility of the announcement by auto manufacturer GM that it will only sell electric vehicles by 2035.
Episode 120 - The ESG Weekly: National interests trump shareholders as French government blocks Carrefour acquisition and Exxon inches forward on climate
Exxon has pledged to step up its carbon capture efforts, but climate‐focused investors may be keeping their champagne on ice. And although the COVID‐19 pandemic may have spurred a government veto, we take a look at why this is not necessarily a new phenomenon in the murky intersection between shareholder rights and national interests.
Episode 119 - The ESG Weekly: Nuclear is Back in Japan and Apple v Facebook
Japan announced that they would be recommissioning their nuclear power plants in order to meet their 2050 net zero goals. We discuss what the ESG implications of this decision are and how nuclear is viewed in the sustainable investment world. Then we discuss why Facebook is so pissed at Apple.
Episode 118 - The ESG Weekly: Another Larry Fink Letter and Market Concentration
The CEO of BlackRock, Larry Fink, has issued another public letter to companies and CEOs about climate change. Last year it was about getting companies to disclose climate‐related risks in line with the TCFD's recommendations. And this year, Fink is pushing companies to set net zero emissions targets by 2050 at the latest. We discuss how both the TCFD recommendations have fared and what we think about net zero emissions targets. Then we discuss how market concentration has changed due to the global pandemic. If you would like to see the research that accompanies the market concentration discussion, please click this link: https://www.msci.com/insights-gallery/industry-concentration-in-the-us.
Episode 117 - The ESG Weekly: Disenfranchised Shareholders and ESG at Banks
Britain's split from the European Union has just taken full effect and there is already trouble in the airline industry. In this episode, we discuss how airlines are dealing with foreign ownership rules in a post‐Brexit era and how one airline (Ryanair) decided it had to disenfranchise its shareholders in order to comply with the rules. Then we discussed the ruling by the Office of The Comptroller of the Currency that prohibits banks from denying lending to oil, gun companies.
Episode 116 - The ESG Weekly: Vaccine Distribution and Artic Oil Sales
COVID‐19 vaccines have been administrated to select groups in certain countries. But we need to vaccinate a large part of the world in order to emerge from the shadow of the pandemic. In this episode we discuss how low‐income countries are being left behind in the rush to vaccinate. And then, we discuss the lackluster auction by the Trump administration for oil and gas leases in the Artic refuge.
Episode 115 - Holiday Special: Santa's daunting carbon footprint, everlasting energy for Hannukah and an inspirational new food lands just in time for Kwanzaa
As 2020 comes to a skidding halt, we throw a glittery holiday lens over innovative and hopeful developments in energy and food. While 2021 may see restaurant giants trying to scoop up market share, a shifting social fabric will make things trickier. And yes, Santa's emissions make for sober reading, but offer a sliver of hope too.
Episode 114 - The ESG Weekly: Water Futures and Diversity at Nasdaq
Special guest, Tim McCourt from CME Group joins us this week to discuss their launch of the first ever water futures based on the Nasdaq Veles California Water Index. We discuss how the water future might affect water efficiency and water scarcity. And then we discuss the new proposal by the Nasdaq stock exchange to adopt new listing rules related to board diversity and disclosure.
Episode 113 - The ESG Weekly: Investors are Mad at Exxon, and Execs are Mad at Shell
We talked about an interactive chart in this episode, the link to it is here: https://www.msci.com/our-solutions/esg-investing/2021-esg-trends-to-watch/climate-reality-bites-paris. But the episode is not about an interactive chart. It is about how two similar oil and gas companies are facing two different revolts ‐ one internal and one external ‐ caused by the same problems: climate change and carbon emissions.
Episode 112 - The ESG Weekly: COVID‐19 vaccines peer out the lab door at the big, wide world and worker wellbeing gets squeezed in competitive South Korean logistics market
Pfizer‐BioNTech, Moderna and Oxford‐Astra Zeneca are all looking to roll out COVID‐19 vaccines after successful phase 3 trials. Amid the hope of locked down populations, we look at the ESG risks of what’s coming next. Meanwhile, although the pandemic has created an e-commerce boom for South Korea’s logistics companies, delivery workers are bearing the burden of competition. And finally, we walk through some of the longer-term forces moulding governance practices at banks.
Episode 111 - The ESG Weekly: Facebook and The Downgrade
We downgraded Facebook from a BBB to a B; but why? Well, it has to do with a little something called governance, and the fact that we revamped how we assess governance in our ESG ratings model. Today, we discuss the Facebook downgrade and the changes to how we assess corporate governance in our ESG ratings model.
Episode 110 - The ESG Weekly: Joe Biden and the Climate
President‐elect Joe Biden has indicated that, early in his administration, he will sign executive orders focused on combating climate change: He will rejoin the Paris Agreement, reverse the 2017 executive order by the Trump administration that called on federal agencies to dismantle their climate policies, instruct agencies to develop new methane limits for oil and gas wells, reinstate and strengthen fuel economy standards for automobiles, and to tighten efficiency standards for buildings. We discuss what all these actions mean for the ESG world.
Episode 109 - The ESG Weekly: Leadership and Interconnectivity
As we all stress over the US election, it is a good time to reflect on what makes an ideal leader and what makes a tyrannical one. In this episode, special guest Matt Moscardi joins us to explore how board interconnectivity (also called interlocking) has a major influence on whether a board practices proper corporate governance.
Episode 108 - The ESG Weekly: Roundtable with Companies on Diversity, and the DOJ's Lawsuit Against Google
We held a (virtual) roundtable in September with companies to discuss racial diversity in the workplace. In this episode, we examine the details of the meeting. And then we discuss the antitrust suit against Google brought by the Department of Justice.
Episode 107 - A zombie in the boardroom? Putting the ‘spooky’ back in ESG
Join us for our Halloween special as we hunt down zombie directors, test a shareholder’s arsenal of zombie deterrents and map out some handy escape routes in the event of a corporate zombie apocalypse.
Episode 106 - The ESG Weekly: Health care and unemployment, and the largest COVID bond ever
As millions of Americans continue to be unemployed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the insurance industry is scrambling to figure out how to deal with the loss of its customer base. We discuss what is unique about the American health care system and how insurance is changing due to COVID‐19. And then we discuss the largest social bond ever issued by the EU which will provide loans to members states trying to keep workers in jobs during the pandemic.
Episode 105 -The ESG Weekly: Pandemics breed contradictions, and racial diversity data during proxy season
Due to the COVID‐19 pandemic, there has been more single-used plastic purchased in 2020 than ever before. We discuss what this and other increases in waste are doing to our ecology and economy. And then we discuss a Financial Times article that claims that asset managers are ready to push companies to disclose more racial diversity data during next year's proxy season.
Episode 104 - The ESG Weekly: Japan is not counting votes, and GE gets served
On September 24, it was revealed that the biggest provider of shareholder services in Japan had miscounted investor votes at the annual meetings of nearly 1,000 listed companies. We discuss what this means for Japanese investors and why it is not just a problem for Japan. And then we talk about why the SEC recommended civil action be taken against General Electric for allegedly violating securities law.
Episode 103 - The ESG Weekly: Biodiversity Risks, and the Largest IPO Ever
A new organization was created in July to address the financial industry's role in biodiversity destruction. Called the Task Force on Nature-related Financial Disclosures, it hopes to do what its predecessor the TCFD did for carbon disclosures. But will it be successful? And then we discussed Ant Group's IPO, the likely largest ever IPO to hit the market.
Episode 102 - The ESG Weekly: The carbon plans of tech, and the FinCEN Files
For climate week, we looked at the climate plans of four tech companies: Facebook, Alphabet, Apple, and Microsoft. And only one of them is committed to actually removing carbon from the atmosphere (which is crucial for combating climate change). And then we discussed the recent investigation that alleges five global banks have knowingly laundered USD 2 trillion for drug cartels, corrupt regimes, arms traffickers and other international criminals.
Episode 101 - ESG Spotlight: Climate Scenario Analysis in the Financial Sector
As climate week kicks off in New York, we break down the basics of climate scenario analysis using the example of MSCI’s Climate Value at Risk model. Translating future climate impacts into direct financial consequences has been a key development in outlining the shape of climate risks for companies and their stakeholders.
Episode 100 - The ESG Weekly: The Business of Disaster, and Apple's E‐Waste Problem
There have been a record amount of natural disasters in 2020 and there are certain companies that position themselves as the solution for recovery after a disaster. We discuss how those companies look and how they get the contracts to help out a community. And then we discuss why Apple decided not to respond to a UK inquiry on its electronic waste.
Episode 99 - The ESG Weekly: COVID‐19 pushes the world into an awkward middle ground, and we revisit the quandary of fake news
A polarized election and social unrest have raised the stakes on content integrity for Facebook, Google and friends. Meanwhile the pandemic’s long‐term consequences may be a boon for gender diversity in Japan’s workforces, but a blow to cruise liners that are going nowhere slowly.
Episode 98 - The ESG Weekly: Hurricane Laura wreaks havoc, Rio Tinto atones for damaging aboriginal heritage site and Microsoft mulls Tik Tok acquisition
September brings a change in season as companies navigate shifting ESG risks. Bonus cuts may not be enough for Rio Tinto to win back community trust, Microsoft could be biting off more user data than it can chew and more sophisticated risk maps highlight gaps in asset location data.
Episode 97 - How human capital and corporate culture have evolved due to COVID‐19
We laid our cards on the table and predicted five trends that would reshape ESG investing in January 2020. But then fate played its COVID‐19 wildcard. In this episode, we take a look at how much things have changed, how much they haven't and how human capital risks may emerge in a post‐pandemic world.
Episode 96 - The ESG Weekly: Uber and Lyft drivers are now employees, and McDonald's sues it former CEO
First, we discuss the ruling by a California judge that Uber and Lyft must now designate its drivers as employees, striking a blow to both Uber and Lyft's business models and the gig‐economy. And then we discuss why McDonald's is trying to get 40 million USD back from its former CEO.
Episode 95 - The ESG Weekly: Companies say HVAC systems are the answer to COVID‐19, and social bonds overtake green bonds
As the world cautiously moves back indoors, travels on planes and subways, many have been promoting the use of HVAC systems that can dilute the viral particles, like those of COVID‐19, as their answer to safety concerns. But what does this mean for the building product companies that build and sell these ventilators? And then we discuss the growth of social ESG bonds as a way to restart our economy.
Episode 94 - The ESG Weekly: We can measure a country's ESG risk, and Nike fires its diversity chief
A country's ESG risk is made up of many factors: Protests and civil unrest, public health crises, labor strikes, natural disasters, and environmental policy and litigation against the government. In this episode we talk about three of them ‐ environmental policy and litigations, the public health crises caused by the pandemic, and natural disasters. And then we discuss why Nike is unique in its relationship with workplace diversity.
Episode 93 - The ESG Weekly: Airlines are bailed out by ESG, and people are sanctioned with companies
When the pandemic was in full force, 12 airlines were bailed out by their respective governments. But there were stipulations to accepting these bailouts, and most of those stipulations were of the ESG category. And then we discussed the weird ways directors of companies are on the hook when the company gets sanctioned by a government administration.
Episode 92 - The ESG Weekly: Rewarding CEOs for being good, and immigrants develop a lot of our technology
Does rewarding CEOs for things like more diversity, better climate policy, and better health and safety actually work? Or are investors just giving rich people more money for not really doing much? And then we discuss how important immigration is for semiconductor (aka everything digital) development.
Episode 91 - The ESG Weekly: Pipelines are OVER and are drug prices too high
A ruling by a US judge has put the entire oil and gas pipeline industry at risk in the US, and a lot of it is because companies have terrible community relations. And then, we discuss the price tag on Remdesivir, the first drug shown to be effective against the coronavirus ‐ and how drug prices affect company incentives.
Episode 90 - The ESG Weekly: The importance of scope 3 emissions and the Facebook boycott
There are three types of emissions ‐ scope 1, 2, and 3; and while scope 3 are the hardest to measure, they can teach investors the most about a company's carbon footprint and climate change; and then we discuss some of the unexpected joiners to the Stop The Hate Campaign against Facebook.
Episode 89 - The ESG Weekly: Wirecard collapse exposes lack of proper governance
This Thursday, one of the hottest companies in Europe, Wirecard, filed for insolvency as its former CEO was arrested on suspicion of false accounting and market manipulation. It is one of the largest cases of possible fraud at a single company since Enron. But how could such a thing happen at a company with not one, but two oversight boards? And what does this mean for how we assess companies going forward? Then we have a history lesson on past scandals by a man who has seen some of the biggest.
Episode 88 - The ESG Weekly: As Norilsk counts the cost of a diesel spill in the arctic, thawing permafrost sounds a cautionary tale
The spilling of 21,000 tons of diesel in Siberia in late May, 2020 echoes the Exxon Valdez disaster from more than 30 years ago. But the case of Norilsk Nickel also highlights how today's responsible investors find themselves in a new landscape as climate change accelerates, with better data but more vexing conundrums.
Episode 87 - The ESG Weekly: Racial diversity data, contractor safety at construction companies during COVID‐19
This episode explores the complexity of collecting and using companies' racial diversity data, and then we discuss how at risk construction companies are as economies start to open and COVID‐19 continues to spread.
Episode 86 - ESG Spotlight: Looking at externally managed companies through a freshly polished lens
When a company hands over the reins to an external manager, it shifts the dynamic between shareholder, board and management. And although that may offer potential benefits, there is plenty to draw the attention of a wily governance analyst or a wary investor.
Episode 85 - The ESG Weekly: Twitter curates content but Facebook does not, there are some companies cutting carbon
This episode begins with our head of ESG research, Linda‐Eling Lee discussing the global protests surging across the US and the world; then we discuss the decision by Facebook management to not affix warnings to US President Trump's tweets after its industry peer, Twitter, decides to do so; and then we talk about one utility company that is successfully transitioning to a carbon neutral future.
Episode 84 - The ESG Weekly: Dam failure floods a Dow Chemical complex threatening toxic sites, the physical risk of climate change
Climate change has increased the frequency and severity of flooding, exposing companies with operations that abut or lay within the US Federal Emergency Management Area designated flood zones to possible damage. The breaching of two dams in Central Michigan this month resulted in historic flooding that mixed with Dow's chemical containment ponds and may have stirred up toxic sediment at a downstream superfund site where Dow is the responsible party. But could investors or the company have guessed the disaster would occur ?
Episode 83 - The ESG Weekly: The ESG of vaccines, and shareholders say JPM must talk climate
There are some promising COVID‐19 vaccines in early human trails, but we have some questions if they are successful: Who will own the patent? Who will distribute them? Who will be responsible if something goes wrong? And then we discuss the recent proxy battle at JPMorgan that ended with some interesting wins for climate activists.
Episode 82 - The ESG Weekly: Safety at airports, biofuel bailouts, and EU Taxonomy
Have COVID, will travel: As regions begin to tentatively reopen, airport employees find themselves on the frontline of possibly sick passengers, we discuss how the type of airport and what plans were in place before the pandemic are affecting airport security; then we discuss the ESG merits of biofuel in light of the industry's recent bailout request; finally, we look at how the EU Taxonomy will affect investors that have a sustainable mandate.
Episode 81 - ESG Spotlight: Oil, gas, and the small matter of an energy transition
With COVID‐19 hitting the pause button on the global economy, many are wondering if this is the start of the end for the oil and gas industry. We break down the basics, look at the different ways companies are planning for the future and discuss how investors can make sense of the risks involved.
Episode 80 - The ESG Weekly: Medical tourism and meat‐packers take a COVID‐19‐sized hit and warning bells ring over deforestation pledges
Like a cleaver and a scalpel, COVID‐19 is slicing through pre‐existing ESG vulnerabilities in the meat‐packing and medical tourism industries. Palm oil certifications make for sober reading as the New York Declaration on Forests nears its first milestone and India's strict lockdown is inspiring innovations both big and small.
Episode 79 - The ESG Weekly: Investors are worrying about the wrong workplace safety measures, green buildings are healthier during pandemics, and what it is like to be in China right now
At MSCI ESG Research, we spend a lot of time collecting information about workplace safety, but as economies start to reopen, we might need to pay attention to how close everyone is to each other while working. And then we discuss why the safety upgrades in green buildings might be the safest option for people during the COVID‐19 pandemic; then we continue our series where we ask our colleagues around the world what its like to live in their region during the coronavirus pandemic.
Episode 78 - The ESG Weekly: Banks and recessions, Bayer calls a virtual meeting, and COVID‐19 is spreading in Japan
In the last recession, Banks were the villains but now they are the conduit through which governments are providing credit lifelines, we discussed who will survive. Then we discussed the decision by the German government to allow Bayer to call a virtual Annual General Meeting aka the annual shareholder gathering, which might mean an erosion of shareholder rights. And lastly we heard how the Government of Japan is dealing with the COVID pandemic.
Episode 77 - ESG Spotlight: Understanding indexes and ESG as COVID-19 tightens the screws
Skeptics and converts alike are watching how ESG performs under the pressure of COVID-19. We review the evolution of ESG data in index construction and possible ways to assess its performance through a pandemic.
Episode 76 - The ESG Weekly: COVID‐19 in private prisons, companies troubled in France, and investor sentiments on COVID
The first COVID‐19 deaths were recorded in a privately run prison this week, we discuss what this means for the future of the industry and what it means for investors in companies with essential but precarious workforces; then we begin our new series on how investors will be affected by different regions' response to COVID; afterward Linda‐Eling Lee, our head of ESG Research, joins us to discuss "The Investor Statement on Coronavirus Response".
Episode 75 - The ESG Weekly: Carbon emissions and pandemics, then we discuss how drugs are rushed forward:
During a global pandemic , carbon emissions decrease along with the economy and everything else, we discuss if it is a sustained decline or a respite; then we have a short take on what drugs are being pushed forward to fight COVID‐19 and what happens when drugs are used for purposes different than the drug marker's original intention.
Episode 74 - Re-valuing real estate: investing in the eye of the hurricane
In this long‐form episode of ESG Now, we take a look at how the carrot of green buildings is fast being replaced with the stick of the brown discount. And for investors already steeled against changing physical risks, brown buildings are shaping up to be the second front in the war against climate change.
Episode 73 - The ESG Weekly: How are companies considering ESG factors during the coronavirus pandemic?
Companies are making drastic moves in an effort to survive as the economy comes to a grinding halt ‐ the market gets new rules, people get laid off, people get put at risk for a job, and alcohol companies save the day. We answer how you can use ESG to understand these complicated times.
Episode 72 - The ESG Weekly: Can bonds save us from the coronavirus? And old folks on boards
Private companies are issuing coronavirus bonds in China in hopes to use the proceeds to fight the spread of the virus. But wait, it's only 10% of the bond's proceeds? And what is a coronavirus bond, anyway? Then we discuss why so many boards have so many older people and why that is now a problem because of the spread of COVID.
Episode 71 - The ESG Weekly: The ESG Weekly: Industries look to survive, adapt or capitalize as the Coronavirus marches on
Airlines grit their teeth for now, but when the fog clears, labor practices may help some rise up faster than others. And for food retail and restaurant companies, adaptability is the name of the game as customers hunker down.
Episode 70 - The ESG Weekly: COVID‐2019 is a bellwether for investors on structural risks in companies, and the oil price wars get weirder
What the novel coronavirus 2019 can tell us about workforces around the world and the risks unheeded by some companies. And then we discuss how the price wars are different than ever before. This week, we talk to the experts about catastrophe and future risks.
Episode 69 - The ESG Weekly: Drug shortages and the coronavirus, from whence your drugs came
The market is freaking out about the coronavirus because it is everywhere but Antarctica, and now everyday medicine is becoming scarce because of supply chain disruptions. But what is a drug supply chain? And why do patients and investors need to worry about vitamin and antibiotic shortages due to disruptions in India and China? We talk to the experts about supply chains and disasters.
Episode 68 - The ESG Weekly: The victims of Camp Fire 2018 are now owners of PG&E, the company that caused the wildfires
The Camp Fire of 2018 was one of the worst wildfires in California's history. After it was found to be caused through negligence on the part of utility giant Pacific Gas and Electric, the victims sued the company and won compensation. But then PG&E did something off and made the victims part owners of the beleaguered company. We ask : Does this help the victims, the company, or the market? Then we have two hot takes on an organization started by an ex‐facebooker that tries to hold companies accountable for climate change and Boeing switches up its board.
Episode 67 - The ESG Weekly: BP is going green and Japan decides the more coal the better for the week of February 17
BP announced it would work toward a carbon‐neutral future, but that would mean it has to grown its revenue from renewables at speeds seen only by alphabet, which is difficult because renewables aren't the same money makers as fossil fuels, so oil and gas might have to start moving into new businesses; And Japan announces it will build 22 new coal plants in the next five years which is odd because everyone else is moving away from coal.
Episode 66 - The ESG Weekly: Does the 2019 Novel Coronavirus have any place in an ESG conversation? And the EU doubts the use of ESG ratings for the week of February 10
As the 2019 Novel Coronavirus spreads with worrying speed, we debate the applicability of ESG when it comes to discussing infectious disease and short‐term pandemics; and after the EU watchdog says ESG rating firms allow companies to be greenwashed, we discuss what it even means for a company to be considered "green ".
Episode 65 - The ESG Weekly: Stakeholders are not happy about Siemens' coal by association for the week of February 3
Companies are finding they can now be guilty by association and attract the ire of stakeholders for something as simple as a railway. Siemens found this out after it invested a relatively small amount in a signaling system for a railway that connected a coal mine in Australia. Many of Siemens' stakeholders descended, and it got so bad that both the CEO and Chairman of the company had to weigh in and it did not go very well. This week we discuss what happens when a react when a company decides to invest even a small amount in a controversial project.
Episode 64 - The ESG Weekly: Companies cannot please everyone, and how are tech companies and oil companies connected for the week of January 27
Amazon employees publicly shamed the company over its Amazon Web Services' connection with oil and gas companies and US federal agencies. But how does a web service company work with an oil and gas company? And does this mean Jeff Bezos won't be able to keep his pledge with the Business Roundtable?
Episode 63 - The ESG Weekly: Indigenous inclusion and carbon offsets can go hand-in-hand, for the week of January 20
ConocoPhillips partnered with Aboriginal groups in Australia to implement a carbon offset program. It is innovative and considers more stakeholders than just shareholders, but there is debate around the effectiveness of carbon offsets. And heavy carbon emitters that rely on carbon offsets to cut their emissions might be setting themselves and their stakeholders up for failure.
Episode 62 - The ESG Weekly: Investors and world leaders are finally freaking out about the climate crisis, and a new regulation in California might change how big tech can use consumer data, all for the week of January 13
This week we discuss The World Economic Forum's finding that, for the first time in its 15-year history, the climate crisis fills the top 5 risks global leader believe our world will face in the coming decade, and then Siyu Liu and Andrew Young explain how the new California Consumer Privacy Act will change how tech companies can collect and monopolize our personal data.
Episode 61 - The ESG Weekly: Wildfire in Australia poses problems for all, and a quick take on how we learned to stop worrying and love social media for the 2020 election, all for the week of January 6
This week we discuss how insurance companies address the physical risks and business risks caused by climate disasters such as the wildfires in Australia, then Andrew Young joins us to give his hot 2020 take on how social media will drop the ball during the US election year.
Episode 60 - The ESG Weekly:Diversity data matters more for investors than financial metrics can show, and Ric Marshall gives a hot take on the decision by Boeing to halt production of the 737 Max for the week of December 16
This week we discuss our new report on the progress companies have made toward gender diversity after Intel decides to release all its pay data to the public, and Ric Marshall joins us to discuss what happens we an oligopoly fails.
Episode 59 - The ESG Weekly: Carbon emissions keep rising for EU automakers as people continue to buy SUVs, and two hot takes on Drax's net-negative carbon plan and Exxon's technical exoneration for the week of December 9
This week we discuss how automakers in the EU are under pressure to lower emissions while European customers continue to buy more and more SUVs, and Velina Karadzhova and Ric Marshall join us to discuss energy power Drax's net ‐negative 10 year carbon emissions plan (9:39) and Exxon's victory over the New York state attorney (12:24).
Episode 58 - Is Hacking Just An Evil Supervillain Trope, Or Something Investors Should Be Prepared For?
From smart watches to smart TVs and connected homes, today's hackers are increasingly spoilt for choice. For the healthcare sector, hacking pacemakers isn't just the stuff of TV fantasy (4:07). Automakers may have traded the upsides of safety and convenience for more hackable cars (9:23). But it's in telecoms that the true shape of hacking risks emerge, not in devices, but in the data they're pumping through bigger, faster data highways (14:19), all on the record.
Episode 57 - The ESG Weekly: As the precarious work arrangements grow, investors might need to look at how companies control a workforce they don't claim as their own, and then two hot takes on Google's shakeup and coal's uninsurability for the week of December 2
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Temporary, part‐time, contracted out, or contingent work arrangements are creating risks for investors across the entire economy as companies face liabilities for a workforce they don't want to claim (0:53). And then Ric Marshall and Umar Ashfaq joins us to discuss the founders of Google stepping down (12:27) and a report by an insurance industry group on coal's uninsurability (14:15), all through an ESG lens.
Episode 56 - The ESG Weekly: Should investors care about antibiotic resistance? And only a handful of companies are preventing a deforestation‐free supply chain for the week of November 18
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Antibiotic resistance ‐ the ability of germs to defeat the drugs designed to kill them ‐ is one of the greatest public health challenges of our time; but as the crisis grows what will happen to the companies that produce antibiotics (0:54)? And then Mario Lopez‐Alcala tells us which companies are slowing the transition to a deforestation free supply chain in South America (10:17), all through an ESG lens.
Episode 55 - The ESG Weekly: Are wild and crazy founders really such a big deal for investors? And the streaming race is on for the week of November 11
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: SoftBank decided all the wild and crazy founders its Vision Fund is investing in need some rules of operation (0:37), and then Siyu Liu warns us about all the data streaming‐companies must now protect (16:07), all through an ESG lens.
Episode 54 -The ESG Weekly: The SEC is putting a gag order onto shareholders, and two spicy takes on Boeing and Saudi Aramco for the week of November 4
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Ken Bertsch, the executive director of Council of Institutional Investors and an all‐knowing proxy god joins Ric Marshall and Mike Disabato to discuss the new rule by the SEC to limit shareholder engagement (0:37), and then we get two hot takes by our analysts on Boeing and Saudi Aramco (12:23), all through an ESG lens.
Episode 53 - The Most Important Thing An Investor Should Know About Private Prisons: Who Do They Care About?
Investors have witnesses an exodus from the private prison industry but even is the core function of a private prison ‐ is it to help prisoners? Is it to help the government? Or is it to help investors? In act 1, we look at how the growth of the 80s build up the prisons of the 2000s (2:55). In act 2, we discuss how private prisons became interwoven into our society. In act 3, we discuss the issue of incentives for private prison operators and what friction is caused by their misalignment (9:42). In act 4, the final act, we discuss the broader implications for investors that invest in private sector companies that provide a public service (28:33), all on record.
Episode 52 - The ESG Weekly: The case against Exxon might change how companies disclose about their climate woes, and the seas are rising up to consume us all for the week of October 28
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: The Attorney General of New York alleges that Exxon first calculated the risks posed by climate change but then freaked out and suppressed the data, an accusation that might change how companies disclosure their data on climate risks far into the future (0:46), and then our cartography expert Gillian Mollad discusses new data on sea level rise and how it might affect the real estate market (11:04), all through an ESG lens.
Episode 51 - The ESG Weekly: How should shareholders deal with Zuckerberg ? And Intel plans to release gender and race pay data for the week of October 21
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: A SPECIAL GUEST joins us to discuss how shareholders should deal with Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg as the founder continues his PR campaign (1:42), and then Meggin Eastman discusses the relevance of Intel's plan to release pay and gender pay data (13:22), all through an ESG lens.
Episode 50 - The ESG Weekly: South Africa's largest utility cannot abide, and a quick update on private prisons for the Week of October 14
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: There are power cuts throughout South Africa after its largest utility Eskom has a number of generating units break down which has threatened the country's economy (0:41), and Andrew Young gives us a quick update on the issue with private prisons as a business model (10:45), all on the record.
Episode 49 - The ESG Weekly: Companies are Hard to Trust When They Lie, And Labor Shortages Cause Concern for the Week of October 7
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: 3M and DuPont failed to disclose their findings on the hazardous impact and proliferation of PFAS (0:40), and Hong Kongers are leaving Hong Kong for everywhere but the U.S.(10:11), all on the record.
Episode 48 - The ESG Weekly: The Bosses Are Getting Too Much For Too Little, and Climate Change Is Coming For Your Real Estate for the Week of September 30
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: The Council of Institutional Investors recommendation that investors check their CEOs pay packages (0:42), and then we discuss the continuing physical risk to real estate posed by climate change (12:52), all on the record.
Episode 47 - The ESG Weekly: Which shareholder action tool is best? And Thomas Cook collapses into liquidation for the Week of September 23
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: The different tools available to investors to address ESG risks (0:39), and Thomas Cook collapses into liquidation stranding hundreds of thousands (10:09), all on the record.
Episode 46 - The gig economy has split the workforce
Those Facebook workers are actually contractors (1:16), it is not just Facebook because everyone uses temporary workers in vital company roles (2:00), this is bifurcating the workforce and some are taking advantage (4:30), if you want to see how this can affect a society just go to Japan (9:32), this might be a canary in the mine for other countries (14:14), and investors are beginning to take notice (17:12), all on the record.
Episode 45 - The ESG Weekly: UAW Union Strikes at GM, and Australia Picks Health Over Coal for the Week of September 16
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: The United Auto Workers go on strike at GM (0:57), and Australia rejects a coal mine due to long‐term health effects (10:58), all on the record.
Episode 44 - The ESG Weekly: EDF Finds Faults in its Nuclear Plants, and Contract Workers are Employees for the Week of September 9
Note! This is a re-released version with one detail corrected about nuclear power generation. Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Nuclear energy and its role in the low-carbon future (0:42), and California rules contract workers are employees for app-based companies (11:58), all on the record.
Episode 43 - The ESG Weekly: Data privacy and advertising don't mix, and glyphosate is banned again for the Week of August 26
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Companies selling data have difficulties keeping data private (0:43), and Germany bans glyphosate usage (9:06), all on the record.
Episode 42 - The ESG Weekly: Johnson & Johnson's Brand and Opioids, and the Fashion Industry Makes Another Coalition for the Week of August 26
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Johnson & Johnson's brand wavers as the opioid crisis comes home (1:10), and the fashion industry tries to lower its waste (11:09), all on the record.
Episode 41 - The ESG Weekly: Singapore will track societal health with Fitbit, and shareholders no longer matter for the Week of August 19
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: The Singapore Health Board partners with Fitbit (0:54), and Meggin and Ric discuss the Business Roundtable's anti-Friedman claim (17:49), all on the record.
Episode 40 - The hidden cost of cement
Is new stuff the best way to lower our emissions (3:36), maybe not because everything new uses everything old (7:40), well then should investors do something about it (12:00), because cement and fossil fuels are closer than you would think (15:15), all on the record.
Episode 39 - The ESG Weekly: Plastics and Fossil Fuel get more cozy, and two rapid fire takes on WeWork and Disclosures for the Week of August 12
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Shell builds a petrochemical facility (0:41), and Matt and Ric quickly try to understand WeWork and the purpose of disclosures (13:44), all on the record.
Episode 38 - The ESG Weekly: Walmart's CEO gets called out in the gun debate, and L Brands' CMO resigns amid company turmoil on the Week of August 5
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Walmart's CEO must address gun sales at his stores (0:44), and the CMO of L Brands resigns amid company turmoil (8:58), all on the record.
Episode 37 - The ESG Weekly: Capital One: Who's in your wallet? And NGOs call Cargill the worst company in the world on the Week of July 22
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Capital One does not know who is in your wallet (0:38), and NGOs call Cargill the worst company in the world (10:25), all on the record.
Episode 36 - The ESG Weekly: Equifax is fined a record USD$800 million after its 2017 data breach, and subprime auto loans area threaten both the auto industry and drivers on the Week of July 22
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Equifax is fined a record USD$800 million after its 2017 data breach (0:36), and subprime auto loans area threaten both the auto industry and drivers (8:01), all on the record.
Episode 35: The ESG Weekly: Water is Bigger in Texas and My Brand, My Ideology on the Week of July 15
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Texas landowners sell their water to oil companies in the desert (0:53), and companies get pulled into social movements (11:22), all on the record.
Episode 34 - The ESG Weekly: Vedanta is a Mine Short and Direct Listing is the New Black on the Week of July 8
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Vedanta loses a mine, but is it Vedanta's fault (1:10), and Slack's direct listing works but does it obscure risks (7:18), all on the record.
Episode 33: The ESG Weekly: Tesla Delivers Cars and Wayfair's Labor Problem on the Week of July 1
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Tesla announces record delivery of cars (0:58), and Wayfair's labor walkout is the new CEO problem (5:03), all on the record.
Episode 32 - The ESG Weekly: San Fran's E-Cigarette Ban and Chicken Collusion on the Week of June 25
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: San Francisco bans the use and sale of e-cigarettes (0:44), and poultry processors are accused of collusion in chicken prices (9:11), all on the record.
Episode 31: Tomorrow's Labor Solution Is... Unions?
Karl Marx's biggest meme was a labor innovation (2:42), but also an investor problem (4:48), but someone should tell South Korea (6:42) because the tech model has labor problems (11:00) and Jack Ma and Richard Liu poked the bear (13:11), all on the record.
Episode 30 - The ESG Weekly: Facebook's Libra and the Trans Mountain Pipeline on the Week of June 17
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Facebook announces its crypto solution in Libra (0:33), and Canada's Trans Mountain pipeline is approved (8:28), all on the record.
Episode 29 - The ESG Weekly: Raytheon/UTC and Ocado's Vertical Farm Play on the Week of June 10
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Raytheon/UTC could have a human capital problem (1:11), and Ocado's vertical farm is a sustainability love story (8:25), all on the record.
Episode 28 - The ESG Weekly: Corruption in China and Health Care Equipment on the Week of June 3
One story this week with ESG glasses: GE, Siemens, and Philips get caught in a corruption scandal in China, so who cares about it most? (0:42), all on the record.
Episode 27 - The ESG Weekly: Renault/Fiat and Malaysia Just Says "No" to Your Recycling on the Week of May 27
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: Renault/Fiat could end up confusing investors (0:42) and Malaysia rethinks its recycling strategy (6:26), all on the record.
Episode 26 - The ESG Weekly: McDonald's #MeToo moment and Overstock.com's Bitcoin play on the Week of May 20
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: McDonald's contends with a discrimination lawsuit (0:47) and Overstock.com's CEO contends with fallback from his stock sale (5:41), all on the record.
Episode 25 - The ESG Weekly: Is There an ESG Angle on Trade Wars, and Amazon's Four-Legged Stool on the Week of May 13
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: the US-China trade war has a weird ESG twist (0:45) and Amazon's robot boxing investment (5:45), all on the record.
Episode 24 - The ESG Weekly: Is It Disruption Week? Swine Fever and iBuying on the Week of May 6
Two stories this week with ESG glasses: swine fever is disrupting the global pork market (0:44) and Zillow targets inefficiency with iBuying (7:15), all on the record.
Episode 23: The ESG Weekly: Is It Disruption Week? Swine Fever and iBuying on the Week of May 6
ESG critics and detractors might be right as we look at three big criticisms one by one: there's not enough good data (2:43), there's too much useles data (7:32), and the ESG rating built from the data are meaningless (11:07), all on the record.
Episode 22 - the problems with ESG
Episode 21: The ESG Weekly: Umicore and the Cobalt Problem on the Weeky of April 22
One story this week with ESG glasses: Umicore saw its earnings drop and blamed undercutting competition for cobalt (0:37), but the problem might be child labor at artisinal mines (2:12), all on the record.
Episode 20 - The ESG Weekly: Amazon Employees Form a (Shareholder) Union and Jack Ma's 996 Blessing on the Week of April 15
Two stories with ESG glasses: Amazon employees are turning to shareholder activism to change the company (1:27), and did Jack Ma poke a sleeping employee giant by calling 12 hour work days a blessing (5:47), all on the record.
Episode 19 - The ESG Weekly: Disclosure is the Thing for Saudi Aramco and Social Media Becoming Tobacco on the Week of April 10
Two stories with ESG glasses: Saudi Aramco may be oversubscribed, but the disclosure might be the bigger deal (0:47), and the regulators are coming for social media in the UK (4:28), all on the record.
Episode 18 - The ESG Weekly: Im(possible?) Burgers and Wells Fargo CEO Search on the Week of April 1
Two stories with ESG glasses: what exactly is the investor angle for Burger King's Impossible Burger play (1:34), and what does it mean that Wells Fargo can't find a new CEO (4:16), all on the record.
Episode 17 - The ESG Weekly: McDonald's AI play and Purdue settles on the Week of March 25
Two stories with ESG glasses: are the efficiency gains of AI at McDonald's worth the data risk (1:19), and what does it mean for Purdue to settle some opioid litigation for the industry(5:26), all on the record.
Episode 16 - The ESG Weekly: Paul Ryan and Robots on the Week of March 17
Two stories with ESG glasses: is Paul Ryan on the board of Fox Corp a good idea (1:35), and how the next tech disruption might be social and not technological (3:25), all on the record.
Episode 15 - Leadership Crisis, or Crisis in Influence?
The cocktail of hyper transparency and societal change makes for vulnerable leaders (3:25), but predicting who's next may be a bridge too far (5:15), but investors have solutions to limit the pain (7:18), all on the record.
Episode 12 - Who Pays for Corruption?
EPISODE 11 - THE POWER OF PEER PRESSURE ON PAY
Episode 10 - Halloween is a Time for Zombies, Ghosts, and Frankenstein
It's Halloween, and that means ghosts need not apply (2:55), shareholder value might get eaten by zombies (7:33), and your creation might be a monster (12:03), all on the record.
Episode 09 - A Short History of ESG: Part II
Episode 08 - A Short History of ESG: Part I
For more than 3,000 years, you've been ESG investing, in four chapters. Chapter 1: Your religion is also your financial advisor (1:36), Chapter 2: Financial outcomes are secondary considerations (3:06), Chapter 3: We find out what you really know (4:51), Chapter 4: The milk spills (6:37), all on the record.
Episode 07 - Join the Gang: Climate Edition
A task force chaired by a billionaire has sent investors looking for advice on climate from unlikely sources that may just have them joining a gang. The TCFD (0:00), learning from... oil and gas? (4:00), don't forget renewables (6:32), to divest or engage (8:41), all on the record.
Episode 06 - The Privacy of Things
Could the data you provide your dishwasher some day be more valuable than the dishwasher? Internet of Things (0:00), hacking and Hackers (2:55), the GDPR (4:00), Cambridge Analytica (7:06), converging IoT and social media data (10:06), all on the record.
Episode 05 - When Genius Meets Governance
Thinking of Tesla, how should an investor balance good governance with visionary brilliance? Atari and Tesla (0:22), checks and balances (2:32), overgovernance at Apple (4:13), Google's golden shares (5:38), and the Tesla "problem" (9:10), all on the record.
Episode 04 - Back to School Special: Student Debt, Consumer Finance, and Robots
Student debt is huge in the US, but as an investor, is it a good bet? The trend of consumer finance (1:44), Navient stands out (3:38), the reckoning is... robots?(5:35), and it might actually be a skills crisis (8:30), all on the record.
Episode 03 - Indra Nooyi, and Why Diversity of Management Matters
Longtime PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi... or one of few women CEOs?... steps down. We talk to Meggin Thwing-Eastman about why that matters. 'Another female CEO done' (0:36), board diversity and employee productivity (1:44), diversity as an investment theme (3:40), more data (6:17), and a little game (9:47), all on the record.
EPISODE 02 - Where should we even start?
Environmental, social, and governance investing related news, research, and trends. In this episode, we start at the beginning... of 2018. We revisit our conversation with Linda-Eling Lee from January as she walks us through the major ESG trends of this year. Emerging markets (1:48), carbon and asset allocation (4:10), fixed income and ESG (6:30), how much disclosure matters, or does it (9:28), and the Year of the Human (12:49) are discussed.
Episode 01 - Welcome to the MSCI ESG Research Podcast, ESG Now
Environmental, social, and governance investing related news, research, and trends. In this episode, we start at the beginning... of 2018. We revisit our conversation with Linda-Eling Lee from January as she walks us through the major ESG trends of this year. Emerging markets (1:48), carbon and asset allocation (4:10), fixed income and ESG (6:30), how much disclosure matters, or does it (9:28), and the Year of the Human (12:49) are discussed.
MSCI ESG Research LLC. is a Registered Investment Adviser under the Investment Adviser Act of 1940. The most recent SEC Form ADV filing, including Form ADV Part 2A, is available on the U.S. SEC’s website at www.adviserinfo.sec.gov.
MIFID2/MIFIR notice: MSCI ESG Research LLC does not distribute or act as an intermediary for financial instruments or structured deposits, nor does it deal on its own account, provide execution services for others or manage client accounts. No MSCI ESG Research product or service supports, promotes or is intended to support or promote any such activity. MSCI ESG Research is an independent provider of ESG data, reports and ratings based on published methodologies and available to clients on a subscription basis. We do not provide custom or one-off ratings or recommendations of securities or other financial instruments upon request.
1 Climate Data and Metrics, Climate Risk Reporting and Scenario Analysis are provided by MSCI ESG Research LLC. MSCI ESG Indexes and Analytics utilize information from, but are not provided by, MSCI ESG Research LLC. MSCI Equity Indexes are products of MSCI Inc. and are administered by MSCI UK Limited.