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Technology could help sustainable investing turn the nook, says JPMorgan


The JP Morgan Chase & Co. headquarters, The JP Morgan Chase Tower in Park Avenue, Midtown, Manhattan, New York.

Tim Clayton – Corbis | Corbis Sport | Getty Images

SINGAPORE — While there’s “nothing new” to sustainable investing, expertise has made it simpler to state the monetary case for contemplating non-financial metrics, in response to JPMorgan.

“The amount of data that we’re able to leverage as investors to help the dialogue that we have with companies is more than ever,” mentioned Jennifer Wu, the financial institution’s world head of sustainable investing, throughout a panel session at Singapore’s FinTech Festival.

From synthetic intelligence to large knowledge and machine studying, the data is now there to raised measure environmental components and their financial implications, she mentioned. Satellite photographs, as an illustration, can now be used to look at and measure an organization’s true environmental influence, comparable to air pollution ranges.

“That’s something very powerful,” mentioned Wu, noting a marked shift over the previous three or 4 years. “It’s not something that we had access to (previously), but it’s possible now.”

Showing the cash

Policy stays key

Still, public coverage stays necessary to making sure environmental practices are appropriately carried out and rolled out.

“The policy environment matters a lot here,” fellow panelist Elsa Palanza, Barclays’ world head of sustainability and ESG, mentioned.

Barclays has seen elevated curiosity for sustainable merchandise from purchasers of its company financial institution, who’re largely primarily based in the U.Okay. and Europe, the place environmental insurance policies are superior, Palanza mentioned. Yet requests from purchasers of its funding financial institution — which is essentially targeted on the U.S. — stay missing, mentioned Palanza.

“We can probably reasonably expect there to be some change, but we also can’t lean into that entirely,” she famous, referring to the upcoming change in the U.S. administration as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to take over in January.

Today, the coverage instructions are a lot clearer and dedication from governments, policymakers, in addition to firms, are simply a lot, rather more prevalent than I’d say three, 4 years in the past.

Jennifer Wu

world head of sustainable investing, JPMorgan

Much work stays in that regard. However, Wu mentioned she is “pretty optimistic.”

“Today, the policy directions are much clearer and commitment from governments, policymakers, as well as corporations, are just much, much more prevalent than I would say three, four years ago,” she mentioned.

“Especially this year with Covid, one thing became very clear: There’s just much greater appreciation for how important it is that we need to be ready for something that’s so systemic, that is so big and could disrupt everything,” Wu mentioned. “I’m very happy to have, in my mind, a lot more constructive conversations with clients.”



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