Ethical investment — returns on good behavior?
The launch of the Global Compact 100 Index, which selects its line-up according to financial performance as well as sustainability credentials, pits purists against pragmatists

Article Highlights

  • The launch of the Global Compact 100 Index pits purists against pragmatists.

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  • The GC 100 tracks the stock market performance of a representative group of Global Compact companies.

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  • The GC 100 offers new developments in a field hungry for innovation and dogged by ideological correctness.

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There is a new kid on the block in environment, social and governance investment, and it’s one that has some answers for those who remain sceptical about “social investing”. The Global Compact 100 index offers welcome new developments in a field hungry for innovation and dogged by ideological correctness.

The GC 100 tracks the stock market performance of a representative group of Global Compact companies selected not only on their adherence to the Global Compact’s 10 principles covering human rights, labour, environmental and anti-corruption standards, but also on evidence of leadership commitment and consistent profitability.

“While many other sustainability screens focus primarily on the environment and social dimensions, we’re a little different,” says Gavin Power, deputy director of the United Nations Global Compact, which launched the index in September. The measure of pre-tax profitability included in the new index is a factor often overlooked by competing sustainability screens.

“We’ve established a baseline...

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