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ESG, Climate Risk News for Financial Advisers

Latest for financial advisers: ESG policy changes, inflation risk, and tech investments.

A roundup of the latest news and reports of interest to financial advisers.

Entire SEC must be involved in climate risk, ESG policy changes: The Securities and Exchange Commission announced the formation of an enforcement task force on climate and environmental, social and governance issues, according to InvestmentNews. That move was the latest in a recent flurry of agency activity at the direction of Acting Chair Allison Herren Lee that also included a directive to ramp up reviews of corporate climate disclosures and an elevation of climate and ESG in examination priorities.

In the wake of that announcement, SEC member Hester Peirce said that the entire commission should take part in any decisions to substantially change its oversight of sustainable investing.

Also of note:

  • Recent SEC examinations have uncovered a range of potential pitfalls for broker-dealers and others active in the digital asset space, which will set target areas for future inspections, according to Financial Advisor IQ.
  • The SEC’s final rule on registered investment advisers’ advertising and marketing practices was recently published in the Federal Register — setting in motion a May 4 effective date, according to ThinkAdvisor.

Growth-minded advisers embrace a tech-driven, borderless future: When advisers reflect on their experience in the tumultuous and sometimes chaotic year of 2020, they use words like "flexible" and "adaptable," writes Kenneth Corbin. But they're not just describing the past.

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Many hard-learned lessons from the past year are helping advisers rethink both their own practices and the shape of the profession as they look ahead to grow their business in a year that might bring an end to the COVID era, out will by no means signify a return to the way things were.

The new post-pandemic retirement life: A number of trends are unfolding that will continue to shape our society, the economy and businesses of the future, writes Robert Laura.

Inflation is on everyone’s mind: In a series of articles, several Financial Advisor authors expressed their views about inflation. Read The Inflation Regime Change Is Already Upon Us by John Authers; Inflation Fears Weaken Investor Sentiment By Saira Malik; and Are Inflation Fears Justified? by Kenneth Rogoff.

Ransomware attacks on the financial industry soared 350% during the pandemic: Last year, financial organizations reported 86 ransomware attacks that involved data extortion, according to a new report from CrowdStrike.

Key insights from the Fidelity Advisor Movement study: Louis Diamond talks with Scott Gorham, vice president of competitive intelligence at Fidelity Institutional, about adviser movement within and across industry channels.

How to value active vs. passive management: The active-vs.-passive portfolio debate falsely forces investors into an all-or-nothing decision between the two. Instead, using a well-known option approach, the authors of this research show how to value active management and how to replicate that option through time using a dynamic mix of active and passive portfolios.