new service to put business in spotlightMay 2000
A new software package that analyses the ethical performance of nearly 2000 international companies is to be offered to investors.
Jeff Rooker, the government’s pensions minister has agreed to speak at the launch of Ethical Portfolio Manager, on 22 May.
The package provides detailed information on more than 850 UK, 500 US and 500 European companies.
Each company is analysed against a range of positive and negative indicators covering 40 research areas.
The Ethical Investment Research Service (EIRIS), which is Europe’s largest independent ethical research body, has developed the package for use by investment managers who wish to take social and environmental factors into account when deciding on which companies to invest in. It is also designed to assist investment managers approaching companies for engagement talks about their ethical policies.
Karen Eldridge, head of client services at EIRIS, said the software had, as expected, attracted interest from managers of ethical funds. But it was encouraging that a number of pension fund managers had also shown interest ‘because they are now more aware of the need to assess environmental and social factors affecting companies when they make investment decisions’.
The US-based Investor Responsibility Center, which provides independent advice on corporate governance and responsibility matters, recently released an upgrade to its socially responsible investing software package Portfolio$creener, which now includes data on the ethnic diversity of the 1500 company boards it monitors.
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