10 Dec DIRECTORS MUST DRIVE CULTURE FROM THE TOP; THE FUTURE OF ESG IS; SOME GOOD NEWS TO END 2020
Hello and welcome to the latest issue of Cannings Insights. As 2020 comes slowly to an end, there is some good news around – and not just the approval of various vaccines around the world. In Australia, at least, the economic news is also positive.
FINALLY, SOME GOOD NEWS TO END 2020
- Business conditions and confidence have reached pre-COVID-19 heights, with near-record monthly jumps during November, according to the latest NAB business survey. Business confidence notched up its fourth consecutive monthly gain, jumping nine points to 12 index points. Read the findings here.
LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL: RAPID PRODUCTIVITY GROWTH
- You’ve heard it before: the pandemic has forced change, and early evidence suggests that some of these transformations are very likely to stick. According to The Economist, the raw materials for a new productivity boom appear to be falling into place, in a way not seen for at least two decades. This year’s darkness may in fact mean that dawn is just over the horizon. Read The Economist’s analysis here.
DIRECTORS MUST DRIVE CULTURE FROM THE TOP
- There has been a significant shift in the focus on company culture over recent years, and a new report by the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) and the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI) has found that directors overwhelmingly see culture as being a key responsibility for directors – as well as management. Read the media release here.
- The landmark report also found that the directors of Australia’s biggest listed companies are failing to disclose how boards assess, and how companies perform, against key measures of corporate culture. “There is a lot of reporting on policies and beliefs, but not on how those values are cascaded. We can’t see if those policies are having an impact,” said Louise Davidson, CEO of ACSI. Read The AFR’s coverage here.
THE FUTURE OF ESG IS … ACCOUNTING?
- There is a quiet revolution taking place in the accounting community, and surprisingly, it’s to do with ESG. Led by the IFRS Foundation, the industry is proposing the creation of a parallel Sustainability Standards Board (SSB), which could mean investors and other stakeholders will suddenly have a much clearer view of any company’s sustainability performance – just as they do its financial performance. Read all about it in Harvard Business Review.
HOW WILL THE PANDEMIC SHAPE BEST PRACTICE INVESTOR RELATIONS?
- ESG is here to stay. Investing is still about the fundamentals. And yes, you should consider making your results announcement on a Monday. These were among the key pieces of advice for IR professionals at this year’s annual Australasian Investor Relations Association (AIRA) Conference. Read Cannings Director Amy Piek’s summary on how the pandemic will change best practice IR in 2021 here.
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