SRI Research Prize Winner: The Market Places Significant Monetary Value On Greater Transparency

SRI's Top Academic Honor Awarded at The SRI Conference to University of Geneva Professor

Nov 05, 2015, 11:00 ET from The SRI Conference and First Affirmative Financial Network, Colorado Springs from ,The Center for Responsible Business, The Haas School Of Business, UC Berkeley

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., Nov. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The market values better corporate disclosure of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and these effects appear strongest among firms in carbon-intensive industries. That conclusion is drawn by Professor Philipp Krüger in a major study that was awarded the 2015 Moskowitz Prize for Socially Responsible Investing during a special ceremony last night at the 26th annual SRI Conference in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Using an advanced study design, the paper examines the impact of new mandatory GHG emissions disclosure in the UK on the London Stock Exchange and provides evidence of causality between environmental disclosure and firm value.

Krüger found that firms most heavily affected by the new regulation experience significantly positive valuation effects. The evidence shows that investors positively value increased transparency regarding corporate climate change risks The results have important implications for security markets regulation in other jurisdictions, such as the United States.

The 2015 Moskowitz Prize recognized the paper "Climate Change and Firm Valuation: Evidence from a Quasi-Natural Experiment" for Outstanding Research in Socially Responsible Investing. The report was authored by Philipp Krüger, Assistant Professor of Responsible Finance at the University of Geneva and Junior Chair at the Swiss Finance Institute.

The Moskowitz Prize is determined annually by the Center for Responsible Business at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business (Berkeley-Haas), and bestowed at The SRI Conference. The Moskowitz Prize is the only global award recognizing outstanding quantitative research in the field of sustainable, responsible, impact investing.  This year marks the 20th anniversary of this academic prize. The prize was named for Milton Moskowitz, one of the first investigators to publish comparisons of the financial performance of portfolios screened for social and environmental issues and impacts.

Steve Schueth, producer of The SRI Conference and president of First Affirmative Financial Network said: "The more information investors have, the more responsible their investment decisions tend to be. It's a virtuous circle—greater transparency motivates investors to invest more in the most responsible companies—which puts pressure on competitors to become more responsible corporate citizens and to make more positive contributions to society at large."

Lisa R. Goldberg, PhD, Co-Director of the Consortium for Data Analytics in Risk & Adjunct Professor of Economics and Statistics at UC Berkeley said: "Philipp Krüger's 2015 Moskowitz Prize-winning paper, "Climate Change and Firm Valuation: Evidence From a Quasi-Natural Experiment" supports the hypothesis that markets value transparency regarding corporate climate change risk. This fascinating, rigorous, and beautifully written article makes an important contribution to the field of sustainable investing and will serve as a model for future research in this subject."

Nadja Guesnter, PhD, professor of international financial management, Muenster School of Business and Economics, University of Muenster, Germany, and a visiting faculty fellow at the Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley said: "We have known for a while that investors are interested in information on ESG and that it seemed that there is a correlation between ESG disclosure and firm valuation. Philipp's study really moves us forward by showing that we are not just looking at correlations. Using a unique setting, the introduction of new carbon disclosure rules in the UK, his work provides evidence of causality between environmental disclosure and firm value. His work shows that not only voluntary environmental disclosure, but even mandatory environmental disclosure required by law has a positive effect on firm valuation."

Philipp Krüger, PhD, is affiliated with the Geneva School of Economics and Management and the Geneva Finance Research Institute, a multidisciplinary research center located at the University of Geneva in Switzerland. His work has been published in leading finance journals such as the Journal of Finance and the Journal of Financial Economics. His research has received or been nominated for awards from organizations such as the Principles for Responsible Investment, the BSI Gamma Foundation, Chicago Quantitative Alliance, the Financial Management Association, and the European Financial Management Association. For more information go to: https://sites.google.com/site/philippkrueger/.

Since its inception in 1996, the Moskowitz Prize has been awarded annually at The SRI Conference, the longest running conference serving investors and investment professionals in the sustainable, responsible, impact (SRI) investment industry in North America. The SRI Conference is produced by First Affirmative Financial Network.

The 2015 Moskowitz Prize sponsors are Calvert Group, First Affirmative Financial Network, Nelson Capital Management, Rockefeller and Co., Neuberger Berman, and Trillium Asset Management. More information about the prize is available at: http://responsiblebusiness.haas.berkeley.edu/programs/moskowitzresearchprogram.html.

ABOUT FIRST AFFIRMATIVE FINANCIAL NETWORK
First Affirmative Financial Network, LLC (http://www.firstaffirmative.com) is an independent Registered Investment Advisor (SEC File #801-56587) offering investment consulting and asset management services through a nationwide network of investment professionals who specialize in serving socially conscious investors. First Affirmative produces The SRI Conference (http://www.SRIconference.com).

ABOUT THE SRI CONFERENCE
The SRI Conference (http://www.SRIconference.com) is the leading forum for the sustainable, responsible, impact (SRI) investors and investment professionals in North America. For more information about the agenda or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Krystala Kalil, at 888-774-2663 or krystala@SRIconference.com.

About the Center for Responsible Business at The Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley
Building upon over a decade of research, teaching, and industry engagement, the Center for Responsible Business (http://responsiblebusiness.haas.berkeley.edu) brings together students, company leaders and faculty to develop leaders who redefine business for a sustainable future. The CRB, part of the Institute for Business and Social Impact (http://haas.berkeley.edu/IBSI/) at the Haas School of Business (http://www.haas.berkeley.edu), inspires students to re-think traditional business practices, envision the roles that they can play in creating change, and obtain the skills to get there.

MEDIA CONTACT
Patrick Mitchell: (703) 276-3266 or pmitchell@hastingsgroup.com.

SOURCE The SRI Conference and First Affirmative Financial Network, Colorado Springs; The Center for Responsible Business, The Haas School Of Business, UC Berkeley



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