Extra Financial Analysis – EFA: Environmental and financial performances of ABB, Akzo-Nobel and SCA: Picturing the business opportunities and risks associated to stakeholder perceptions and environmental and social prerequisites
External assessment of companies’ environmental aspects often focus on the existence of strategies, commitments, management systems and reporting of firms that concerns environmental aspects. Instead, in line with extra financial analysis, in order to play a role in decision-making, analysis of environmental aspects should incorporate the influence that stakeholders may have on future revenues of the assessed firm and how well advanced corporate strategies are in meeting these threats, turning them into business opportunities. Thereafter, the environmental information financial analysts’ use in their financial analyst reports as well as the relation between environmental and financial performance are illuminated. Three industry sectors, Chemicals, Electrical Equipment and Paper & Forest Products, are specially analysed in this report. Out of almost 4500 analyst reports about 36 percent contain environmental information, but when looking at industry sectors these numbers range from only 3 to up to 79 percent. The type of environmental information that the analysts focus on in their reports are on how firms’ products and product portfolios are adopted to Environmental regulations facing customers/markets, Customer demands and Eco-Efficiency. This product perspective is strongly related to discussions of business opportunities of the firm. In fact, a good 77 % of the financial analyst reports containing environmental information dealt with opportunities linked to environmental aspects. To a lower extent, financial analysts write about company specific risk issues like emissions and litigations while their reports is virtually absent from aspects like environmental strategies, policies, management systems, reporting and auditing. The correlation between corporate financial and environmental performances is illuminated through regression analyses. Industry environmental risk is found to be negatively correlated to corporate return on assets – ROA – (in an static model) while (when applying a dynamic model) corporate environmental performance and ROA have a positive correlation in the short term, which can find support by other studies using different data.
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