Important developments in U.S. securities law, white collar criminal defense, regulatory enforcement and other emerging issues impacting financial services institutions, publicly traded companies and private investment funds
Last week, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission proposed a set of sweeping new rules requiring public companies to disclose climate-related risks in their registration statements and periodic reports. Under the proposed rules, public companies would have to disclose the actual and potential impacts of climate change on their business, management and governance processes to … Continue Reading
The SEC’s Climate and ESG Task Force has been criticized by Republican commissioners who believe enforcement in the area would be premature. But Kelly L. Gibson, acting deputy director of the enforcement and head of the agency-wide ESG Task Force, stated that the task force is necessary to recognize evolving investor priorities and that it will … Continue Reading
While the SEC staff tends to be of the broad view that ESG warrants serious consideration, there are a breadth of different opinions regarding what ultimate disclosure requirements should look like. This discord came to a head during a virtual SEC panel last Friday. The panelists included both SEC staff and industry leaders. One-by-one, the … Continue Reading
On Monday, the SEC asked for public comments on a new, standardized ESG disclosure framework that would require issuers to disclose certain climate and other ESG-related risks. The comment request—which encapsulates public and private company disclosures—includes 15 questions with the goal of providing a “consistent, comparable, and reliable” framework to allow investors to use ESG … Continue Reading
On February 18, 2021, the Institute of International Finance (“IFF”) hosted the U.S. Climate Finance Summit, at which both John Coates, Acting Director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, and Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard made statements in favor of companies providing fulsome ESG disclosures. These pronouncements underscore the Summit’s larger goal of supporting … Continue Reading
In 2020, trillions of dollars flooded ESG funds, and many analysts are expecting this trend to continue in 2021. BlackRock, the largest asset manager in the world, plans to have $1.2 trillion in ESG assets in the next 10 years, and an estimated one-third of all U.S. assets under management are already sustainably invested. Given the … Continue Reading
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