Posts Categorized ‘Financial Reform’

Only the Shadow Knows…
By Mel Miller

In 2012, I first shared my concerns about the rise in shadow banking. In fact, I listed shadow banking as one of the “gray swans” during my annual presentation at The SRI Conference that year. The broad definition of “shadow banking” includes any bank-like activity undertaken by a firm not regulated as a bank. That would not Read more »

Posted: June 9, 2014

Does High Frequency Trading Create Market Efficiency?
By Michael Schweibinz

High Frequency Trading (HFT) utilizes computer algorithms to move in and out of stock positions at extraordinarily high speeds. These algorithms identify market patterns and execute large volumes of security purchases and/or sales in milliseconds. Profits are generally counted in tenths of pennies per share; but it’s a volume business, and the pennies add up Read more »

Posted: May 28, 2014

Student Teams Invest with their Hearts and Minds
By Michael Schweibinz

Business schools around the world are integrating sustainability into their core curriculums. While this shift inside academia is now relatively common, implementation strategies vary considerably, with each institution creating somewhat unique programs for their students. For example, the University of Waterloo and the University of Massachusetts Boston have both created new courses and platforms that focus on developing responsible Read more »

Posted: May 21, 2014

Stanford Says No to Coal
By Michael Schweibinz

More and more individuals and institutions are making investment decisions based on their values—not merely expected returns. Yet, making money while making a difference is nothing new; First Affirmative Financial Network has been practicing a values-based investment approach for over twenty-five years. Investors who embrace sustainable, responsible, impact (SRI) investing seek to enhance the common good, by owning Read more »

Posted: May 19, 2014

Applause!!! Europe Requires Sustainable Reporting for Large Public Companies
By Michael Schweibinz

The European Parliament has passed a historic law that will require major businesses to include sustainability factors as part of their annual financial reports. By 2017, all publicly traded companies that employ over 500 workers will be required to abide by this new standard. No doubt, this new law will reverberate through smaller companies as well, as Read more »

Posted: April 30, 2014

Why I Dislike Quantitative Easing?
By Mel Miller

In a previous blog I explained the Federal Reserve’s traditional tool of reducing the Fed Funds rate to stimulate a weak economy.  The stimulation impact is the result of the relationship between the Fed Funds rate and the Prime borrowing rate charged by banks for business and consumer loans.  The Prime rate offered to a bank’s most credit worthy borrowers Read more »

Posted: April 21, 2014

Monetary Policy During the “Great Recession”
By Mel Miller

The U.S. economy is slowly recovering from the most severe economic decline since the Great Depression. The Great Recession, which started in 2007 and “ended” in 2009, was anything but typical as it relates to recessions of the past. Before we discuss one of the primary causes, let’s review the role of the Federal Reserve to reverse a recession. Read more »

Posted: April 7, 2014

Lobbying Disclosure a Hot Topic in 2014
By Holly Testa, Director, Shareowner Engagement

Institutional investors are once again requesting that companies disclose federal and state lobbying activity, including activities conducted through third parties such as trade organizations. The campaign, organized by AFSCME and Walden Asset Management, has rapidly gained momentum over the past four years. In 2011, AFSCME Employees Pension Plan started the campaign by filing six shareholder proposals. The Read more »

Posted: March 19, 2014

Where Have All the Jobs Gone?
By Mel Miller

In a recent blog I discussed the growing problem of student loan debt and the fact that recent college graduates’ unemployment rate is double the national average. As the economy continues its slow recovery from the Great Recession one must ask “Where are the jobs?” Also bearing discovery is whether college graduates have received the Read more »

Posted: March 10, 2014

Foundations Increase Impact Through Mission-Aligned Investing
By Michael Schweibinz

By Betsy M. Markus and Michael Schweibinz In recent months, organizations like the Association of Small Foundations, Mission Investors Exchange, and The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investing (US SIF), have published guides to assist foundations with aligning their investment portfolios with their missions. The message is simple, though implementation can seem daunting. In general terms, foundations “dedicate Read more »

Posted: March 5, 2014