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#50 Remy Briand: The ESG evolution at MSCI, and performance amid the pandemic

#50 Remy Briand: The ESG evolution at MSCI, and performance amid the pandemic

Remy Briand is head of ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) at MSCI, the global financial data and research company. It’s one of the world’s leading stock market index providers and they assess more than 7,500 companies on their ESG performance.

Remy lives in Geneva and he’s an outspoken advocate for the importance of considering environmental, social and governance factors when making investment decisions.

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On this episode…

We dug into how we define sustainable companies and how they’ve fared in the market crash brought on by the corona virus. I wanted to understand whether ESG funds really had outperformed their mainstream peers.

We also discussed the future trajectory of ESG integration, the spectrum of approaches to ESG from a values approach, across to a risk focus, and Remy explained his view that it might only take 5 years for an ESG approach to be the dominant (opt-out) style of portfolio construction.

My key takeaway this week…

“Actually, Australian investors have always been leaders in this area. Australian companies may have an ESG profile that’s clearly more biased towards mining etc, but the investors in Australia have been looking at these issues for a long time. And a lot of them are advanced in this adoption curve.”

Good Future’s Good Books

“I tend to read a lot of corporate information, and academic papers. I began with MSCI twenty years ago, as an academic researcher, so a lot of what I read can be quite dry.

I read a lot on climate change and how you model climate, and those types of things.”

Links

MSCI – Principles of Responsible Investing

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