Legal & General fund boosts stakes in firms it shamed over climate crisis

The UK’s biggest fund manager has spent nearly £300m this year increasing its shareholdings in companies it named and shamed for dragging their heels on climate action.

Legal &General Investment Management (LGIM), which has been one of the most outspoken fund managers over the climate crisis, announced in June it was cutting five more companies from its environmentally and socially conscious funds for not doing enough to mitigate the climate emergency.

But figures compiled by the Guardian show that LGIM as a whole actually spent about $367m (£285m) since January increasing its stake in those companies – the oil corporation ExxonMobil, the insurer Metlife, the maker of Spam, Hormel Foods, the US retailer Kroger and Korean Electric Power Corporation (KEPC) – even when accounting for the divestments made by its Future Worlds Funds.

LGIM, which manages more than £1tn in assets, openly admits that it continues to hold stakes in companies excluded from those environmentally and socially focused funds, saying it gives them the opportunity to engage with the board and ultimately influence company behaviour.

But the boost to LGIM’s overall shareholdings in those firms raises questions over whether companies should take LGIM’s threats seriously, particularly when it is spending millions of pounds to increase its holdings.

Read More At The Guardian

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