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Basics of ESG Investing (Virtual Classroom)

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Introduction

This online training is being delivered live in two 4-hour sessions which run from 13:30 – 17:30 London (UK).

You can learn more about our virtual, online courses and how they work on our course FAQ page. Or view our Virtual Classroom schedule to see what else is being delivered live in our online classrooms. If you don’t see the [topic name here] training topic, you are looking for, or if you would like an online classroom in another time zone, please tell us.

The Covid-19 Pandemic has forced investors and lenders to become acutely alert to investment risk that lies outside of the traditional credit, market and operational risk spectrum. Analysing their ESG exposures before investing allows them to appraise their strategic risk spectrum, using a proven set of tools.

Equity and debt issuers are increasingly positioning themselves on an ESG spectrum in order to attract investment funds. Even classic ‘smoke-stack’ industries are working hard to identify an ESG narrative with which to associate themselves. Sometimes their wok manifests as internal/organic development and sometimes it comes as a result of acquisitions.

Investors know from past experience how damaging ESG related events can be to their overall portfolio performance. Ratings systems, such as Morningstar, and index providers, such as MSCI, have helped informing potential and current investors about the ESG risk profile of their investment portfolios.

The ‘Basics of ESG Investing’ programme starts by looking at the typical investment process adopted by fund managers. This includes a description of the ‘investment universe’ with and without ESG qualifying securities, as well as asking the key question whether ESG is an asset class in itself.

The second session looks at the internal components of standard valuation models (no math skills needed here!) in order to identify where ESG metrics are making their presence felt (if any) and the session closes with a look at carbon credit trading as an example of a traded price for one of the most significant components of ESG: CO2 emissions.

Session three focuses on data sources and data availability. In particular, what is the provenance of the data, how granular is it and can it be used to obscure, or ‘greenwash’ a company’s true ESG footprint?

Session four outlines the most important ESG initiatives and comments on their importance to global investment decisions and a changing investment market.

Session five outlines the seven principal metrics that currently are important to investors and discusses the quantitative and qualitative aspects of each metric.

This course can be taken with Fundamentals of ESG Investing (4 x 4hr sessions).

Learning Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • describe the changes to the investment process and determine if ESG is an asset class or an overlay
  • investigate classic asset valuation models and determine how ESG metrics will change the variables
  • describe the data sources available, incl. their level of granularity, and to determine the authenticity and provenance of reported ESG data
  • discuss the main ESG initiatives that are currently influencing investment decisions
  • outline and evaluate key metrics required by professional investors

Who Should Attend

  • Fund accountants
  • Fund administrators
  • Portfolio analysts
  • Performance attribution managers
  • NAV reporting staff
  • Wealth management sales staff
  • Corporate bankers operating in the ESG space
  • Any IMC certificate holder, who wishes to improve their ESG skills

Topics

  • Old Wine in New Bottles
    • The investment process has not changed
    • Typical investment process
    • Investment universe – is ESG an asset class or an overlay?
    • Is ESG investing philanthropy? – risk vs return
  • Valuation Tools in Investment, Trading and Corporate Finance
    • CAPM, WACC and DCF
    • No model incorporates ESG metrics
    • Indirect measures of ESG exposure – operational risk
    • Credit spreads and beta/cost of capital
    • Creating and trading carbon credits
  • ESG Data Availability
    • MSCI ESG key issue hierarchy and ratings
    • Macro data sets, Company disclosure, Government databases
    • Data materiality and validity
    • ‘Greenwashing’ and other threats to data integrity
  • Overview of ESG Initiatives relevant to Investors
    • Global Reporting Initiative (1997)
    • UN Principles for Responsible Investment (2006)
    • Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (2015)
    • Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (2018)
    • EU Technical expert group on sustainable finance (2018)
  • ESG Metrics for Investors
    • A formal ESG policy and Assignment of ESG responsibility
    • A corporate code of ethics and Diversity among employees
    • An environmental policy and estimates of carbon emissions
    • Health and safety record

Teaching Method

  • Group live instruction and illustrative examples
  • Review & interpretation of financial information to illustrate key points
  • The program is highly interactive and will encourage participation through exercises and case studies that the delegates will solve individually or in small workgroups. These activities are designed to allow delegates to practice and to consolidate the concepts that will be discussed during the lectured sessions of the program. The program will focus on the practical realities of the market, rather than taking an excessively mathematical or academic approach.
  • All participants will receive digital copies of the presentation slides, handouts, and other course materials

Instructors

The instructor for this course will be drawn from one of our core faculty of subject matter experts. Further details will be published at the earliest opportunity.

Venue

Our seminars take place in 4 star professional conference facilities, generally in city-centre hotels like the Marriott, Sheraton or Hilton brands. Detailed Joining Instructions are sent to all registered delegates by email approximately one month before the event. The Joining Instructions will confirm exact venue details and nearby (or onsite) hotel recommendations with bedroom rates where available. Coffee and lunch will be provided.

CPE/CPD Accreditation

IASeminars is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website: www.nasbaregistry.org.

 

Field of study: Accounting

Prerequisites

None