By CATHERINE THORBECKE, ABC News
(NEW YORK) -- Citigroup said it has incorporated environmental, social and governance scores (ESG) to its securities services data platform to let clients better analyze the sustainability exposure of their investments.
The major update comes to Citi Velocity Clarity, the bank's online data and analytics platform that aims to help users stay up to date on the latest metrics about their investments.
The sustainability measures will be provided daily by data firm Arabesque S-Ray, according to the bank, and include visualization tools to better analyze ESG information.
"The ability to understand ESG exposure has become imperative across the entire industry as investors, advisors and regulators are increasingly asking for transparency from asset managers and asset owners," Fiona Horsewill, the global head of data for Citi Securities Services, said in a statement.
"With this latest addition to Citi Velocity Clarity, we offer our clients the ability to understand their ESG exposures inherent within their portfolios and report on their investments from a sustainability perspective," Horsewill added.
Elree Winnett Seelig, the global head of ESG for markets and securities services at Citi added that "providing access to data is a critical foundation" when looking at ways to facilitate the transparency of ESG factors in the market.
ESG has become the latest buzzword in the investing world, as consumers put more pressure on businesses to operate sustainably.
Larry Fink, the CEO of the world’s largest asset manager BlackRock, called climate change a business and investing priority in his 2021 letter to company leaders released earlier this year.
"Over the course of 2020, we have seen how purposeful companies, with better environmental, social, and governance (ESG) profiles, have outperformed their peers," Fink wrote, citing internal data.
"But the story goes deeper. It’s not just that broad-market ESG indexes are outperforming counterparts," Fink added. "It’s that within industries -- from automobiles to banks to oil and gas companies -- we are seeing another divergence: companies with better ESG profiles are performing better than their peers, enjoying a 'sustainability premium.'"
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