Weekly Impact Investment Market Update: June 2, 2017

Impact Investing & ESG

Impact Investing

How the Ford Foundation Is Raising the Stakes on Impact Investing

This interview with Xavier Briggs, Ford Foundation’s VP of Economic Opportunity and Markets, discusses the foundation’s investment strategy, including its criteria for selecting impact funds in which they invest.

Sorting Out Impact Investing in a Changing Market

In this interview, Robert Webster, Managing director at Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (SEAF), discusses his perspective on impact investing, the relationship between impact and financial returns, and how his group selects SMEs in emerging markets to invest in.

Why Impact Investing Has Reached a Tipping Point

$25 trillion is invested with consideration to ESG factors; from 2014 to 2016, sustainable, responsible, and impact assets have grown by 33% in the United States. For impact investing to go mainstream, the gap between interest and execution must be bridged; in 2016, 58% of respondents indicated interest in impact investing products, while far fewer were actually investing in the products.

How Impact Investors Can Change the Status Quo for Smallholder Farmers

2.5 billion people living on less than $4 per day are dependent on smallholder farming; to remedy this, investments can be made in emerging inclusive outgrower schemes, eco-friendly commercial farms, specialized input and extension service providers, and direct-trade importer businesses.

Road Work Ahead: Smoothing the Flow of Impact Investing with Lane Markers and Turn Signals

As more investors join the market for impact investing, impact intermediaries will need to bring greater clarity to the array of services they offer.

Opportunities for Investing in Inclusive Growth

Morgan Stanley’s Institute for Sustainable Investing has created a report and an analytical tool for investors to explore different opportunities for inclusive growth investment.


Withdrawal from Paris Accord Will Spur Interest in ESG, Advisers Say

If government regulations regarding environmental responsibility are reduced, investors will have a bigger role to play in advocating for improved environmental practices.

United States and Europe

United States

Oil Slides as U.S. Climate Withdrawal Compounds Glut Concerns

The President’s withdrawal from the Paris agreement could mean that the United States’ oil production could expand more quickly than its current rate; as of the end of May, U.S. crude oil production has increased by 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) from last year’s rates, reaching 9.34 million bpd.

U.S. Department of Energy Authorizes Additional Liquefied Natural Gas Exports from an Offshore Project

Exports reaching 1.8 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas from a Louisiana natural gas terminal in the Gulf of Mexico have been approved, causing the U.S. to progress further into becoming a net exporter of natural gas.

US Adds Fewer Jobs than Expected

At 4.3% as of May, US unemployment is at its lowest since 2001; however, only 138,000 jobs were created that month, which is 40,000 less than economists had expected.


Brighter Skies over Eurozone as Growth and Employment Pick Up

Overall unemployment for the European Union is at its lowest in eight years, while economic growth was at 0.5% in the first quarter. The EU projects a total 2017 growth of 1.7%, compared to 2016’s growth of 1.8%.


Emerging Markets

Latin America

World Bank Planning $2 bln Green Bonds for Peru – Econ Minister

While Peru has yet to develop a reforestation industry, the IFC is preparing to do an emission of approximately $2 billion in green bonds.

Nestle Investing in Factories, Creating 2,900 Jobs in Latin America

The company looks to tackle social issues in one of its strongest markets, creating 2,900 jobs for young people and providing training for improving job-hunting skills over the next three years.

Colombia’s Peace Agreement Can Give Fillip to Inclusive Growth

The IMF projects growth to increase gradually over the next five years, with approximately 3.5% growth. This will be sustained by non-commodity exports, infrastructure spending, and improved confidence stemming from the peace agreement.


Rural India Needs Solar Power for More than Just Lighting, Study Finds

While India plans on adding 10,000 small scale solar power grids across the nation over five years, India still needs more energy to help launch new businesses, increase time spent working or studying, or make any substantial quality of life improvements.


Kenya Inaugurates Chinese-Built Railway Linking Port to Capital

The $3.2 billion railway is its biggest infrastructure project in 50 years, and was completed months ahead of schedule. The railway is part of China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative which seeks to improve land and maritime trade routes between China and Europe, Asia, and Africa.

OPEC Oil Output Rises in May as Cut-Exempt Nigeria, Libya Pump More

Decreased output in Angola and Iraq helped OPEC adhere to its six month supply cut deal, but after sustained output increases from Libya and Nigeria OPEC will prolong its deal until March 2018.