CSRHub Blog Research on ESG metrics and comments on sustainability best practice

The Effect of Legal Violations on Perceived Sustainability Performance

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 26, 2021 10:33:27 AM / by Bahar Gidwani

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Hundreds of companies violate US federal, state, and local laws each year. Do these transgressions affect how these companies are rated by ESG (Environment, Social, and Governance) experts? Using an excellent data set called Violation Tracker from Good Jobs First, we show there is a 52% correlation between the change in number of violations over a 15 month period and the change in our Leadership Ethics rating. This result suggests that corporate ESG managers need to keep an eye on their company’s legal problems. It may also indicate that those who use ESG ratings in their investment process could predict future changes in some areas of ESG ratings, based on violation patterns.

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