February 2016 Sustainable Stock Exchange Highlights

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SSE INITIATIVE NEWS

Five More Stock Exchanges Join the UN Campaign for ESG Disclosure
February 4, 2016
Bringing the total to 13, stock exchanges from Kazakhstan, Mexico, Morocco, Norway and Spain announced their public commitment to produce a guidance on environmental, social and governance (ESG) disclosure by the end of 2016.

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CONSULTATIONS AND DEADLINES

Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) Consultation: Strengthening Accountability, Recognizing Diversity
Comments due March 18, 2016
This consultation seeks input on how the PRI can: better promote wider adoption of ‘responsible investing’ practices, ensure that the PRI remains inclusive and welcoming, and identify additional accountability mechanism(s) to ensure signatories adhere to their commitment.

Ceres Consultation on the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) Sustainability Reporting Guidance
Comments due March 25, 2016
In order to gather and summarize investor views on the WFE’s recently-launched sustainability reporting guidance, Ceres has assembled a comment form to organize investor feedback. Investors’ responses will be processed into a report and submitted to the WFE’s Sustainability Working Group. For more information, please contact Tracey Rembert or Robert Schwarz.

European Commission Consultation on Non-financial Reporting Directive Guidelines
Comments due April 15, 2016
The Commission is seeking input from citizens, companies, investors, organizations, and public authorities on the non-binding guidance on reporting non-financial data by all large companies following article 2 of Directive 2014/95/EU.

United Kingdom (UK) Consultation on Non-financial Reporting Guidelines
Comments due April 15, 2016
The UK is seeking input on how to implement the EU’s Non-Financial Reporting Directive 2014/95/EU into UK law.

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UPCOMING WEBINARS AND EVENTS

Ring the Bell for Gender Equality
March 7-11, 2016
To commemorate International Women’s Day (8 March 2016) over 30 Stock Exchanges around the world will join the UN Global Compact, the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative, UN Women, IFC, The World Federation of Exchanges and Women in ETFs, in raising awareness about the importance of gender equality to sustainable development and business by ringing an opening or closing bell.

2nd Annual ESG, SRI, & Impact Investing Summit
March 30-31, 2016
Held at The Princeton Club in New York City, this event will bring together leading finance industry members to discuss the growth and execution of ‘responsible investing’ methods and strategies.

Ceres Conference 2016: Business Not as Usual: Sustainability in an Age of Disruption
May 4-5, 2016
Held in Boston at the Park Plaza Hotel, attendees will learn how sectors from electric utilities and transportation to food and finance are adapting to 21st century sustainability challenges, and gain an understanding of the roadblocks ahead to addressing sustainability issues.

5th GRI Global Conference: Empowering Sustainable Decisions
May 18 – 20, 2016
Held in Amsterdam, sustainability leaders from around the globe will gather to discuss how the ESG information needed to truly empower decision making can be made more accessible, comparable, and available in real time.

SSE Executive Dialogue on Green Finance
July 20, 2016
To evaluate what role stock exchanges can play in the global trend towards green finance, the United Nations Sustainable Stock Exchanges initiative will be holding a roundtable discussion on Green Finance as part of the UNCTAD World Investment Forum in Nairobi, Kenya.

SSE 2016 Global Dialogue
September 6, 2016
The 2016 SSE Global Dialogue will provide a platform for stock exchanges to meet with their peers and stakeholders to evaluate the impact of new global sustainable development and green-finance policy agendas on capital markets, alongside PRI in Person in Singapore.

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GENERAL NEWS

Comply or Explain: A Review of Environmental Reporting in Annual Reports
February 24, 2016
The Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB) report discusses the disclosure of environmental information in the annual reports of FTSE 350 companies following the implementation of mandatory greenhouse gas reporting in the UK and proposes regulatory steps that could be taken to facilitate disclosure.

UNEP FI, PRI, and The Generation Foundation Partner to Integrate Sustainability into Investors’ Fiduciary Duties
February 18, 2016
The three-year project aims to get global asset owners, asset managers, and policy makers to uphold the full remit of their fiduciary duty and take full account of material sustainability factors in investment practices.

Nasdaq Finds Another Use for Blockchain Technology
February 15, 2016
Nasdaq and the Republic of Estonia have collaborated to enable shareholders of companies listed on Nasdaq’s Tallinn Stock Exchange to vote in shareholder meetings using blockchain technology, thus streamlining a proxy voting process that has historically been labor-intensive and fragmented.

Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) Calls for Reliable ESG Data
February 15, 2016
In addition to recommending that the ‘materiality’ test for financial information be applied to non-financial information, the ICAEW’s recent report states that assertions about CSR activities, carbon emissions, diversity, ethics, etc. should be tested for completeness, occurrence, accuracy, presentation, and ease of understanding.

Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) Sees Rapid Growth in the USA
February 8, 2016
Having grown 76 percent in just two years, 18 percent of all US assets under management or $US 6.6 trillion are now managed using ‘socially responsible investing’ methods and strategies.

Thai Bourse (SET) Promotes Sustainability Among Listed Companies
February 8, 2016
SET’s Sustainable Development Forum took place in February. In recognition of the benefits to capital markets, the economy, society, and the environment, SET continuously promotes listed firms’ ESG practices and encourages responsible investing via trainings and events throughout the year.

High Audit Fees a Predictor of the Issuance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Reports?
February 6, 2016
A collection of university professors’ findings suggest that a commitment to higher quality financial reporting, as indicated by the fee amount paid, is positively correlated with both the issuance and quality of CSR Reports.

SASB and Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) Announce Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
February 2, 2016
The MoU outlines the cooperation, collaboration, and alignment that will take place between the two organizations to help accountants prepare for how to record and report on how sustainability performance impacts financial performance.

Industry Observers say the Yangon Bourse has not Gone Far Enough on Provisions for Transparency
February 1, 2016
Vagaries, such as being required to report, relevant corporate information and facts the public should know along with there not being any corporate governance code have been cited among the issues by legal and business experts.

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ESG INDICES AND PRODUCTS

Suite of Low Carbon Indices Launched by STOXX
February 4, 2016
The new index family consists of four sub-families, which enable market participants to limit the exposure of their portfolios to carbon risk while enabling participation in low-carbon economic growth.

JP Morgan Teams Up with the World Bank and Standard & Poor’s for ESG Platform
February 1, 2016
JP Morgan Ethos Investments enables investors to deploy actively and passively managed capital across asset classes in assets that have high ESG ratings.

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MANAGEMENT NEWS

Nigerian Stock Exchange’s CEO Re-appointed
February 23, 2016
Chief Executive Officer, Oscar Onyema has been re-appointed for another five-year term.

Christiana Figueres (head UNFCCC) to Step Down
February 23, 2016
Christiana Figueres announced that she will step down from her post as the executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in July and will not consider an extension.

New Chair and CEO at Ontario Securities Commission (OSC)
February 11, 2016
Maureen Jensen has been appointed as OSC’s Chair and Chief Executive Officer for a term of two years.

Paul Druckman (CEO, IIRC) Will Step Down
February 11, 2016
Paul Druckman, Chief Executive Officer of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) will resign during 2016.

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