Top Stories

June 24, 2022


Most UK employers failing to act against ageism, survey shows

Research from professional group Chartered Management Institute has found that most UK employers are not acting to combat workplace ageism. The body polled 1,000 managers and found that while most believed their organisation was inclusive, practice showed very few were taking concrete action. While 90% of managers claimed they are inclusive when it comes to gender and ethnicity, only 5% said they had proactive measures in place designed to recruit older workers. This comes as older workers have chosen to leave the workforce since the pandemic began, a trend that charity Exodus says is due to a feeling of being forced out due to ageist recruitment practices, workplace culture and lack of openness to flexible working. (Financial Times)*


Rise of women to top of UK finance companies is ‘stagnating’

Britain’s six-year drive to increase the number of women in senior management in financial firms is “stagnating”, according to a review by New Financial think-tank. It found that 78% of 400 signatory firms are on track to meet their targets as part of the voluntary ‘Women in Finance Charter’. However, the average level of female representation in senior management remained flat at 33% in 2021, compared with 2020, the review found. While almost half of firms have committed to have 40% of their boardroom made up of women, 31 firms missed their own targets for 2021, with 19 citing reasons such as restructuring, low turnover and Covid-19. Comparatively, Pension Bee, Yorkshire Building Society and American Express headed the list of 33 signatories that surpassed their targets. (Reuters)


Corporate America shares criticism over SEC’s climate rules

Business associations for top US-listed companies have pushed back against a landmark proposal by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to make corporate America disclose a range of greenhouse gas emission figures. Groups including the US Chamber of Commerce, the Bank Policy Institute, the National Association of Manufacturers and the American Petroleum Institute asked the Wall Street regulator for more discretion in the details they provide to investors. The scale of the pushback highlights the pressure the SEC is under to dial back its proposals, although the regulator has also seen show of support in favour of its rules. Comments on the proposal will inform the SEC’s final rulemaking, which some analysts expect by the end of 2022. (Reuters)


Tech platform helps fashion industry verify ESG claims

Tech platform start-up Impactbytes claims it is the first company to offer a platform that offers global easy access to the sustainability credentials of tens of thousands of products. The company has developed a smart data platform that provides product-level insights for fashion brands through a single interface, connecting sustainable brands with a large consumer audience. The platform now offers over 40,000 products from more than 200 ethical fashion houses and 400 fair trade brands. Following its success in the Netherlands, the company has expanded to Germany and the UK. Impactbytes also enables print and online media companies to access their data through one platform to find and verify products and brands. It also offers monetization tools that allow media companies to earn commission by promoting products. (Fashion United)


UK launches ‘Green Nudge’ initiative for pensions

The UK government’s Department for Works and Pensions (DWP) has announced the launch of ‘Green Nudge’, a new three-week trial aimed at encouraging pension savers to make green investment choices and increase engagement on the sustainability of pension investments. The initiative, which was commissioned as part of the government’s COP26 agenda, will test the impact of behavioural nudges and messages on increasing engagement on the sustainability of pension investments. Under the initiative, the DWP in collaboration with Behavioural Insights Team is working with asset manager Aviva, workplace pension provider Smart Pension, and financial services company Hargreaves Lansdown, to deliver the “nudges” and messages to more than 160,000 pension scheme members. (ESG Today)

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