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Women on Boards: Global Trends in Gender Diversity

Many institutional investors are increasingly focused on the gender composition of company boards. Our latest research shows that companies in the MSCI World Index with strong female leadership generated a Return on Equity of 10.1% per year versus 7.4% for those without, as of September 9, 2015, though we could not establish causality. We found that companies lacking board diversity suffered more governance-related controversies than average. Global asset owners are promoting a 30% global female director goal; we estimate that this goal is unlikely to be attained until 2027. We explored two ways to reach the 30% goal as early as 2020.

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