Archive for February, 2012

Does investing ‘Nice’ pay?

Friday, February 24th, 2012

The most frequent question about Socially Responsible Investing is “how much profit are you giving up by playing ‘Nice’?”
Answer: None. In fact, there’s extra profit in SRI.

Other studies have reached the same conclusion, but here’s a new one by Harvard Business School as reported by Tom Randall of
Saints Beat Sinners for Sustainable Investing: Stock Chart

The February 2012 Capital Drain newsletter has been emailed

Sunday, February 19th, 2012


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How Investors Push Sustainability

Saturday, February 18th, 2012

Corporate managers act as if they’ve forgotten sometimes, but shareholders are the owners of companies. As owners, they directly select the the Boards of Directors who hire and oversee management. Shareholders may want to give management orders about corporate behavior. In practice, shareholders are a diffuse power, with indirect control, and management usually follows their own agenda.

Shareholder resolutions provide a way for a group of shareholders (owners) to put a directive to a vote by all the shareholders.
Among other uses, this is one of the ways that Socially Responsible Investors push management to make the companies behave more responsibly.

Ceres leads a national coalition of investors, environmental organizations and other public interest groups working with companies to address sustainability challenges. Part of their effort is to organize shareholder resolutions. Some pass, some don’t, but they all send a message to management about shareholders’ desires.

Graph of Ceres shareholder resolutions by year


Click here to read the article:
Ceres Shines a Light on the Power of Shareholder Proxy Votes


Too Big to Regulate: “It absolutely will happen again”

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Bill Moyers interviews super-bright Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter and columnist Gretchen Morgenson on the banking crisis and flaccid congressional response.

“When I was living through it, watching it in terror literally at my desk at The New York Times because it really was on the precipice, there we were, I thought to myself, “We will address this because this is so frightening and so scary and so damaging to this country.” And I thought we will address it because this is the big one.

This is the big crisis that we’ve been leading up to. Long-Term Capital Management didn’t really destabilize the system, the internet bubble didn’t really destabilize the system, this was the big one. And yet the response was so lame and so ineffectual that it absolutely will happen again.”

Gretchen Morgenson on Industry Influence from on Vimeo.

You can read the transcript here.

Longsplice rope

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