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Policy Contribution

Sustainable investing: How to do it

Sustainable investment is gaining momentum in Europe, but its current proposed taxonomy might hinder innovation in the field. In this Policy Contribution, Dirk Schoenmaker advocates for an active investment approach with concentrated portfolios, and sets out a six-point plan for sustainable investing.

By: and Date: November 28, 2018 Topic: Banking and capital markets

In the transition to a sustainable economy, companies are increasingly adopting the goal of long-term value creation, which integrates financial, social and environmental value. Investors have an important stewardship role to steer companies to sustainable business practices that will achieve long-term value creation.

Policy proposals from the European Union High Level Expert Group on Sustainable Finance, published in January 2018, promote a fiduciary duty to include sustainability in investment, company disclosure of sustainability information and a unified classification system (or taxonomy) of sustainable investments from which investors can choose. A fiduciary duty to include sustainability in the investment process and to disclose sustainability information can accelerate sustainable investment.

But an official taxonomy might stifle innovation in sustainable investment. While such a taxonomy might bring much needed clarity in certain markets, such as the emerging market for green bonds, the general approach to sustainable investment should be market-led. Investors and banks are best placed to assess which companies are prepared for the transition to a sustainable economy.

This Policy Contribution proposes an active investment approach to sustainable investment. This active approach is based on fundamental analysis of companies’ environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors and engagement with investee companies on material ESG factors. The aim is to uncover and realise companies’ social and environmental value alongside their financial value.

Building on previous research (De Jong et al, 2017), we present a six-point plan for sustainable investing. These points range from active investment in concentrated portfolios and long investment horizons, to deep engagement with companies and shorter investment chains.

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Parliamentary Testimony

Dutch Parliament

The future of the stability and growth pact

Testimony given to a Tweede Kamer der Staten-Generaal roundtable discussion on the future of the stability and growth pact.

By: Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Dutch Parliament Date: November 24, 2021
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Past Event

Past Event

The UK strategy for Green Finance

This members-only event discusses the UK's strategy for greening the financial system.

Speakers: Adam Lyons, Fayyaz Muneer and Nicolas Véron Topic: Banking and capital markets Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: November 22, 2021
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Past Event

Past Event

Covid recovery and the green transition: What can promotional banks do?

What is the role of promotional banks in financing the green transition?

Speakers: Sophie Barbier, Maria Demertzis, Ricardo Mourinho and Lucinio Muñoz Topic: Green economy Date: November 18, 2021
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Parliamentary Testimony

European governanceFrench Senate

European Union countries’ National Recovery and Resilience Plans: A cross-country comparison

Testimony before the Economic Affairs Committee of the French Senate.

By: Simone Tagliapietra Topic: European governance, French Senate, Macroeconomic policy Date: November 12, 2021
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Opinion

European governance

Can EU fiscal rules jump on the green bandwagon?

By and large, setting a new green golden rule would be a useful addition to the existing EU fiscal framework.

By: Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European governance, Green economy, Macroeconomic policy Date: October 22, 2021
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Blog Post

European governance

Germany’s post-pandemic current account surplus

The pandemic has increased the net lending position of the German corporate sector. By incentivising private investment, policymakers could trigger a virtuous cycle of increasing wages, decreasing corporate net lending, which would eventually lead to a reduction of the economy-wide current account surplus.

By: Lionel Guetta-Jeanrenaud and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European governance, Macroeconomic policy Date: October 21, 2021
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External Publication

Global Economic Resilience: Building Forward Better

A roadmap for systemic economic reform calling for step-change in global economic governance to increase resilience and build forward better from economic shocks, prepared for the G7 Advisory Panel on Economic Resilience.

By: Thomas Wieser Topic: Global economy and trade, Macroeconomic policy Date: October 14, 2021
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Opinion

Letter: Declining investment may explain why rates are low

Perhaps an analysis of the causes of the declining investment rate would bring us closer to explaining why real interest rates are so low.

By: Marek Dabrowski Topic: Macroeconomic policy Date: October 1, 2021
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Opinion

What Evergrande signals about China's economic future

Under Xi Jinping's new economic agenda 'common prosperity', China is cracking down on indebted real estate developers like Evergrande.

By: Alicia García-Herrero Topic: Global economy and trade Date: September 30, 2021
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External Publication

Investing in China: myths and realities

Concerns are real, but the country fares as well as peers at similar levels of development. Analysis published in fDi Intelligence.

By: Uri Dadush and Pauline Weil Topic: Global economy and trade Date: September 20, 2021
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Policy Contribution

European governance

A green fiscal pact: climate investment in times of budget consolidation

Increasing green public investment while consolidating deficits will be a central challenge of this decade. A green fiscal pact would address this tension, but difficult trade-offs remain.

By: Zsolt Darvas and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European governance, Macroeconomic policy Date: September 9, 2021
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Past Event

Past Event

Sustainable finance

Bruegel Annual Meetings, Day 3 - In this session on the final day of the Meetings, our panelists will discuss the future of finance and its sustainability.

Speakers: Maria Demertzis, Alberto De Paoli, Pierre Heilbronn and Alexandra Jour-Schroeder Topic: Banking and capital markets, Green economy Location: Palais des Académies, Rue Ducale 1, Brussels Date: September 3, 2021
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