Non-ESG ETFs

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coasting
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by coasting »

Mark Leavy wrote: Sun Oct 30, 2022 10:59 am You can buy just 1 share (at whatever the stock price is) for most any (every?) stock on the market.

Some brokerages allow you to buy fractional shares (Interactive Brokers) where you can spend as little as $25 on each company. Not sure how voting would work though if you own less than a full share.
As the spirit of this thread was around shareholder voting rights (initially for funds, but now we also consider individual stocks), the question regarding fractional shares piqued my interest. Per this SEC page:
https://www.sec.gov/oiea/investor-alert ... hole-share
Voting Rights: You may not have voting rights if you own fractional shares. Your ability to exercise proxy voting will depend on how your brokerage firm’s fractional share investing program works. Some brokerage firms allow it, with special procedures, and some firms do not allow it at all. Ask your brokerage firm whether you will have any voting rights associated with fractional share purchases.
So it seems to depend on your broker.

Interestingly it appears that while ownership in a Berkshire Hathaway class B share does convey voting rights, unlike paid dividends the voting weight is not in same proportion to the class A shares. However, invitation to the annual shareholder meeting is extended to class B owners. So pony up the full ~450K for each class A share if you want to get full value from a voting perspective. If your PP's 25% stock allocation is in BRK-A, it makes precise rebalancing a bit difficult for portfolios under $10 million.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Jack Jones »

Last segment is Myron Scholes (of Black-Scholes Model):
Our final speaker today will be Myron Scholes who will discuss the best ways to adjust your portfolio if you are concerned about ESG. Some market participants who are concerned about carbon emissions are selling shares in their polluters, but Myron thinks that investment managers should first optimize the portfolio and then buy carbon credits to maximize returns while minimizing carbon in the environment.
https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/b ... 1537283585

However, I found that to be the least interesting part of an otherwise excellent podcast!
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yankees60
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... ow-organic

ESG Fund Labels Disappear in Japan as Clampdown Spooks Industry
No new fund has used the ESG label in last five months
Weak performance has also led to fund outflows in Japan
BySatoshi Shizume and Sheryl Tian Tong Lee
October 31, 2022 at 7:00 PM EDT
Above provided by: Vinny, who always says: "I only regret that I have but one lap to give to my cats." AND "I'm a more-is-more person."
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by jalanlong »

Maddy wrote: Sun Oct 30, 2022 7:19 am
Kriegsspiel wrote: Wed Oct 26, 2022 5:47 pm The most thorough solution is to invest in individual corporate stocks. . .
What dollar amount, generally speaking, is required to get into an individual stock? I've always assumed that a certain minimum is required for no better reason than to keep transfer agents from wasting their time on the "little people."
My account is at M1 Finance and I believe you can buy as little as $1 of any stock on their platform.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Tyler »

It looks like things are actually moving in the right direction on the voting rights front. Vanguard just announced a pilot program that allows retail investors to have proper voting power with their shares.

https://www.etfstream.com/news/vanguard ... narrative/

And less than a day later, Blackrock announced that they're expanding a similar program. Competition FTW!
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Kbg »

I think they saw the writing on the wall legally and are probably deciding they don’t need the hassle of the potential law suits.

You don’t get to be a shareholder and defacto board member without taking on liability for your decisions/actions.

Regardless, it is a good trend.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Maddy »

My apologies. . . I thought you were talking about buying stocks directly from the company, rather than through a brokerage.
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Kriegsspiel
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Kriegsspiel »

I don't know how they were able to pick out me, selling my Vanguard/Blackrock funds because of their proxy voting habits, among all the market turmoil but YOU'RE WELCOME EVERYONE.
You there, Ephialtes. May you live forever.
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Tyler
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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Kriegsspiel wrote: Sat Nov 05, 2022 6:36 am I don't know how they were able to pick out me, selling my Vanguard/Blackrock funds because of their proxy voting habits, among all the market turmoil but YOU'RE WELCOME EVERYONE.
The hero we need. 8)

I'm also thankful for this thread for pushing me over the edge to trade out of a few Blackrock funds. Not so much for the politics, but just to save a bunch of money in reduced expenses.
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dualstow
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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O0 O0 O0
Whatever your politics, this is just bad bad bad
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by dopplerdave »

Well this is interesting. An offshoot of Consumers Reports is taking on the ESG people.

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2022 ... -activism/

I wonder what changed at CR?
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yankees60
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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dopplerdave wrote: Wed Nov 16, 2022 11:25 am
Well this is interesting. An offshoot of Consumers Reports is taking on the ESG people.

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2022 ... -activism/

I wonder what changed at CR?


I do not believe that Consumer Reports is at all related to Consumers Research.

If I'm remembering Consumers Research correctly ... as opposed to Consumer Reports which has no ads and has no links to the products they review ... that is NOT the case with Consumers Research.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consumers'_Research

Consumers' Research is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established in 1929 by Stuart Chase and F. J. Schlink after the success of their book Your Money's Worth: a study in the waste of the Consumer's Dollar galvanized interest in testing products on behalf of consumers. It published a monthly magazine called Consumers' Research Bulletin. Leading staff from this organization, thwarted in their efforts to establish a collective bargaining unit of a labor union, protested and left to form Consumers Union in 1936. The magazine published by Consumers Union, initially Consumers Union Reports and now called Consumer Reports, gained popularity and market share over the Bulletin and largely supplanted its relevance.

Consumers' Research remained an educational organization whose mission is to increase the knowledge and understanding of issues, policies, products, and services of concern to consumers. It is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and works at the intersection of consumer issues and policy. It is described as a conservative group.[1][2]
Above provided by: Vinny, who always says: "I only regret that I have but one lap to give to my cats." AND "I'm a more-is-more person."
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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Dec 7 (Reuters) - Vanguard Group Inc is pulling out of a major investment-industry initiative on tackling climate change, the world's biggest mutual fund manager said on Wednesday, explaining it wants to demonstrate independence and clarify its views for investors.
https://www.reuters.com/business/sustai ... 022-12-07/
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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Good!
Whatever your politics, this is just bad bad bad
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Kriegsspiel
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Kriegsspiel »

Tyler wrote: Fri Nov 04, 2022 10:12 am It looks like things are actually moving in the right direction on the voting rights front. Vanguard just announced a pilot program that allows retail investors to have proper voting power with their shares.

https://www.etfstream.com/news/vanguard ... narrative/
Has anyone already figured out the process for doing this? I looked through Vanguard's website and didn't see anything.
You there, Ephialtes. May you live forever.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by dopplerdave »

Interesting editorial in today's WSJ. Guess I will be changing Schwab ETFs for Vanguard's.
Screenshot 2023-05-16 140051.png
Screenshot 2023-05-16 140051.png (34.41 KiB) Viewed 19047 times

wsj.com
Opinion | The ESG Proxy Vote Ranking
The Editorial Board
4–5 minutes
Is your asset manager voting based on the interests of investors or for political agendas?

May 15, 2023 6:21 pm ET

If Americans want to make investment decisions using environmental, social and governance factors, that’s fair enough. It’s a free country. The problem is having a hidden agenda that applies to everybody else. A new analysis says that, even in non-ESG investment vehicles, many asset managers proxy vote in favor of woke shareholder proposals to do racial audits or strangle fossil fuels.

The table nearby shows the score. It’s from a report by the Committee to Unleash Prosperity, which examined “4,814 non-ESG branded funds” to see how proxy votes were cast on “50 of the most extreme ESG-oriented shareholder proposals from 2022.” One proposal wanted Home Depot to perform a “racial equity audit” to identify “adverse impacts on nonwhite stakeholders.” Another called on Costco to set climate targets for “Scope 3” emissions, including due to “land use change” and “deforestation.” Neither has anything to do with the bottom line.

Among the top 40 most active voters, the report gives an A grade to Dimensional, Vanguard, T. Rowe Price, and Fidelity, a signal that they respect savers and investors who have differing views on today’s heated political debates. “We don’t believe that we should dictate company strategy,” Vanguard CEO Tim Buckley recently said regarding climate change. “It would be hubris to presume that we know the right strategy for the thousands of companies that Vanguard invests with.”

The report awards an F-minus to six top-40 firms that backed more than 90% of the ESG proposals. Drum roll, please: Invesco Perpetual Select Trust, Deutsche Bank, Swisscanto, Northern Trust, Storebrand Asset Management, and BNP Paribas. Other prominent firms that received a D or an F grade include Goldman Sachs, State Street, TIAA-CREF, Charles Schwab, UBS, and Guggenheim.

How about Larry Fink’s BlackRock? It gets a C grade. The report says BlackRock “has begun to retreat from its ESG advocacy on proxy voting as shareholder proposals have become more extreme.” Also quoted is a BlackRock statement last year that “many of the climate-related shareholder proposals coming to a vote in 2022 are more prescriptive or constraining on companies and may not promote long-term shareholder value.” Mugged by reality?

Another surprise, or maybe not, is that ESG labeling isn’t always a reliable guide. The study says it also examined 382 funds with explicit ESG branding and found they were only “modestly more likely” to vote for these proposals. Among the fund families analyzed, 109 offered ESG and non-ESG options, yet sometimes the difference hardly mattered. “Only 58 of these met the ‘sniff test’ of voting patterns consistent with investor intent,” the report says. “Investors needs to be vigilant about where they allocate their capital, as even non-ESG funds can have a decidedly pro-ESG orientation.”

The report also calculates an imputed grade for the big two proxy advisers. Given their recommendations, Glass Lewis gets a D. ISS gets an F-minus. As shareholder proposals get wackier, perhaps they will adjust their tack, especially now that they’re getting political attention. In January a group of Republican state Attorneys General argued in a letter to Glass Lewis and ISS that they seem to have “acted contrary to the financial interests of their clients.”

Sunshine is what this ESG business demands. Pensioners and investors want a good return. What they don’t want, to pick one example, is for companies that sell paint or hamburgers to undertake costly external audits so that they can self-flagellate about the ills of the world. The Committee to Unleash Prosperity won’t have the last word, but its ranking is a good resource if you’re wondering what your asset manager is doing when you aren’t paying attention.
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Xan
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Xan »

The real fix is for funds to not have voting rights; the voting rights should belong to whoever's money it actually is. Is there any progress on that front?
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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Interesting. I was under the impression that Vanguard and Blackrock were the most egregious ESG proponents. If that grading table is accurate, this is indeed good news. Profits for shareholders should be their main focus, nothing else.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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DogBreath wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:29 pm Interesting. I was under the impression that Vanguard and Blackrock were the most egregious ESG proponents. If that grading table is accurate, this is indeed good news. Profits for shareholders should be their main focus, nothing else.
Same!
Whatever your politics, this is just bad bad bad
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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DogBreath wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:29 pm Interesting. I was under the impression that Vanguard and Blackrock were the most egregious ESG proponents. If that grading table is accurate, this is indeed good news. Profits for shareholders should be their main focus, nothing else.
Except that by (for example) not encouraging, say, a fossil fuel company to try and diversify its business they are endangering long-term profits (aka the whole "stranded assets" issue). Yeah, doing such encouraging (via proxy votes, votes for/against candidates for boards of directors, shareholder votes and shareholder resolutions, etc) would might be considered "ESG" but it would also actually be in the interests of long-term shareholders.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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D1984 wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 8:40 pm
DogBreath wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:29 pm Interesting. I was under the impression that Vanguard and Blackrock were the most egregious ESG proponents. If that grading table is accurate, this is indeed good news. Profits for shareholders should be their main focus, nothing else.
Except that by (for example) not encouraging, say, a fossil fuel company to try and diversify its business they are endangering long-term profits (aka the whole "stranded assets" issue). Yeah, doing such encouraging (via proxy votes, votes for/against candidates for boards of directors, shareholder votes and shareholder resolutions, etc) would might be considered "ESG" but it would also actually be in the interests of long-term shareholders.
That logic is debatable IMHO.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by Kriegsspiel »

Xan wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 4:01 pm The real fix is for funds to not have voting rights; the voting rights should belong to whoever's money it actually is. Is there any progress on that front?
Agreed.

Keep in mind, even the companies they gave A ratings to are still voting for/influencing corporations towards what everyone thinks of as ESG matters. For instance, if you read Vanguard's and Fidelity's proxy voting guidelines, they both consider gender, race, and ethnicity to be main focus points when voting for board members. Fidelity specifically says that they will not support a board nominee if he's a man, and there are no women on the board (or 2 or less women on a board of 10 members). So they are explicit in saying that they will oppose a male board nominee. This isn't just with their ESG products, it's everything you own through them.

It seems that they've been working to establish the precedent that woke priorities like sexism and racism are beneficial so that they can get around the fiduciary responsibility they have to their customers. Academia (full of the woke) seems to have been working on producing shit papers to support the idea for a while now, which are what the investment companies use to justify themselves.
You there, Ephialtes. May you live forever.
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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Aussie GoldSmithPP - 25% PMGOLD, 75% VDCO
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

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Hal wrote: Thu May 18, 2023 8:51 am
From ZeroHedge

https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/repor ... esolutions


Glad to see some sanity coming back to this.

Also, in reading this: "Just last week, GOP presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy unjustly threw Vanguard under the ESG bus, telling an audience, "The three largest asset managers are BlackRock, State Street and Vanguard...they're using $20 trillion of our money to force American companies to adopt racial equity programs and emissions caps." "

Ramaswamy continues to un-impress me as a presidential candidate.

"Vanguard has been steering its ship back toward sanity on this front. Earlier this year, Vanguard withdrew from the $59 trillion Net Zero Asset Managers initiative, an organization that's part of the $150 trillion United Nations-affiliated Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero.

“We don’t believe that we should dictate company strategy,” CEO Tim Buckley said at the time. “It would be hubris to presume that we know the right strategy for the thousands of companies that Vanguard invests with. We just want to make sure that risks are being appropriately disclosed and that every company is playing by the rules.”"
Above provided by: Vinny, who always says: "I only regret that I have but one lap to give to my cats." AND "I'm a more-is-more person."
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Re: Non-ESG ETFs

Post by D1984 »

DogBreath wrote: Wed May 17, 2023 6:54 am
D1984 wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 8:40 pm
DogBreath wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:29 pm Interesting. I was under the impression that Vanguard and Blackrock were the most egregious ESG proponents. If that grading table is accurate, this is indeed good news. Profits for shareholders should be their main focus, nothing else.
Except that by (for example) not encouraging, say, a fossil fuel company to try and diversify its business they are endangering long-term profits (aka the whole "stranded assets" issue). Yeah, doing such encouraging (via proxy votes, votes for/against candidates for boards of directors, shareholder votes and shareholder resolutions, etc) would might be considered "ESG" but it would also actually be in the interests of long-term shareholders.
That logic is debatable IMHO.
I don't see what's especially debatable about it.

New fossil powered vehicle bans (i.e. no registration of new vehicles that have gasoline/Diesel/CNG engines) start to kick in between 2030 and 2035 in many countries and more than a few US states as well) have already started to be put into place. Even if it weren't for those there are new EPA emissions and MPG standards that get a bit tougher every year from this year onward and that--at least as per what Car and Driver magazine reports--will force manufacturers to sell a new vehicle mix in the US that by 2032 will be more than 2/3rds EVs. Auto/bus/truck consumption is around 65 to 66% of fossil fuel use; if there are not to be started fossil fuel assets then where will the growing (or even stable) demand for gasoline come supposed to come from as more and more new vehicles each year are non-fossil fueled powered?

Then add in to the mix that solar and wind are already cheaper than new coal power plants or new NG combined cycle plants and within a few years even with storage they will be cheaper than said fossil fuels fired plants. And that's not even considering that solar and wind are still not at the top of the "S-curve" yet and as such should still get cheaper on average by a few percent each year in real terms while fossil fuel combustion is already pretty much at its technological limits (or at least its cost-effective technological limits).

And let's not even consider the huge amounts of new renewables that will go online (and the large quantity of gas fired heating that will be replaced by heat pumps and the like) over the next eleven years thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act.....

Or the beginnings of what is shaping up to be bans on new gas and fuel oil hookups in residential and commercial construction in several states by the late 2020s or early 2030s.

Or the carbon taxes that many countries are beginning to impose (and/or to raise if they already impose them).

How exactly are the oil/gas/coal companies supposed to not have stranded assets when renewables begin taking their primary markets and eating them for lunch? Heck, some the oil companies themselves seem to finally be realizing this to at least some level...they are quietly choosing to not invest nearly as much in exploring and drilling for new sources of petroleum but rather to pay more of their profits out in dividends and buybacks. Ideally they would invest that money in new renewables R&D rather than "investing" it in dividends and buybacks but even so, it's clear by their actions that at least a few people in fossil fuel land have begin to see the writing on the wall.

Finally, none of the above is even beginning to consider the question of whether or not "internalize profits, socialize costs, maximize value for shareholders/owners and to hell with the consequences of said actions for everyone else" is even something we as a society should want to begin with. The very existence of corporations (i.e. their corporate personhood, their existence as organizations with limited liability, and the ability to stand as separate entities from their owners) is a creation of government and of society; why should society tolerate/encourage an ethos on the part of corporations that if an individual did the same thing (i.e. maximize their own personal utility at any and all costs) would quite rightfully cause everyone else to see that person as a sociopath?
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