BlackRock is the best of both liberal worlds. They get woke but it’s you that goes broke. They don’t feel your pain. BlackRock has gone off the investing reservation by going with the Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing, which in turn has suffered in the current downturn. While other brokerage houses are turning away from ESG investments since the returns are always so much lower than investing to create wealth.
By getting portfolio companies to invest in green companies that are allegedly environmentally sound, but economically lagging, making a profit in the best of times is hard and during bad times is nearly impossible. iShares’ ESG Aware MSCI ETF — which has its largest holdings in companies like Microsoft, Alphabet, and Tesla — is down 18% since the beginning of 2022. But, iShares’ Global Energy ETF — dominated by oil and gas conglomerates like Exxon Mobil, Chevron, and Shell — has risen nearly 25% over the same time period.
A May report detailing BlackRock’s “firm-wide” ESG efforts, it says that the company is looking to “engage with investee companies on ESG issues to enhance long-term value.” And me, I’m looking to turn dog crap into gold. Ironically, my plan has a better chance of succeeding than theirs does.
BlackRock — which maintains a 4.2% stake in Apple, a 4.5% stake in Microsoft, and a 3.6% stake in Amazon — is among the most influential asset managers in the world. Combined with the holdings of Vanguard and State Street, the three firms control an average 20% stake in every Fortune 500 company and have been willing to jointly exercise their power toward progressive ends — for instance, by placing three environmental activists on the 12-person board of oil giant Exxon Mobil.
In essence, BlackRock and other large asset managers direct the policies of corporate America on the basis of their clients’ funds — which is often the retirement and pension savings of typical American investors. However, an exclusive Daily Wire poll conducted by Echelon Insights showed earlier this year that 64% of respondents believe “individual investors whose savings are being invested” should ultimately decide whether retirement funds and pension plans are allocated according to ESG criteria. A mere 20% believe that “Wall Street asset managers” should make such decisions.