With the new day comes strength and new thoughts
— Eleanor Roosevelt
And so it is.
The Socially Inspired Investor (SII) now focuses our new thoughts around post-pandemic investing. If the trend continues, as we see from the articles we have curated for you at the ESG In Focus section, then for the first time, investors may be liberated from the binary choice of deciding whether to do good, according to their values, or compromising their values for investment returns.
The current strong performance of ESG oriented investments has opened the eyes of many of the titans of the investment world including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, AllianceBernstein and others. CNBC is devoting significantly more segments to ESG investing and shareholders and consumers are demanding increased accountability on a myriad of social values. Of course, defining personal values is well…very personal. Racial injustice, diversity, preferences around energy sources, cannot be just lumped together and be relevant to everyone. In future SII issues we will look to create a framework on how to “customize” your ESG.
ESG investing seems to align very well with post-pandemic investing. Similarities include more focus on technology, inclusive corporate culture, health orientation and a platform to embrace the personal values that support social interaction.
But there most certainly must be tradeoffs to consider as well. It might be that to achieve size and scale, society may have to become more comfortable with centralism, allowing for very large organizations (Amazon, Tesla, Zoom, Beyond Meat, et al) to lead the way. Of course, that could lead to the possibility of free trade manipulation, data misallocation and even enhanced cyber security exposure. Regulatory efforts clearly have not yet evolved. Becoming aware of the new risks ahead is critical as we better understand the new normal. Just something to keep in mind as we go on this journey together. We will also look to dedicate future SII editions to these risks.
The SII SPOTLIGHT ON and the SII PODCAST in this issue focus on a deep dive into the UNCDF activities and their partnership with Impact Shares, an ETF from Brookmont Management. This partnership offers an easy, affordable and accessible way for investors to invest in the ESG space, and in turn donate part of the management fees that they charge to the UNCDF. Esther Pan-Sloane, head of partnerships, policy and communications at the UNCDF and Ethan Powell Principal and CIO from Brookmont discuss their partnership. We also take a deeper look at UNCDF and Esther’s background in the SPOTLIGHT ON section as well.
You can find more information on Impact Shares at https://impactetfs.org/sdga-etf/.
For socially inspired investors, where investment returns are simply not enough, we hope we continue to inspire you and invite you to bring others along. Thank you for joining us on this journey.