Money & The Economy

Woke Investing Takes Massive Hit As Investors Lose Interest

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) funds lost billions in the third quarter as demand among investors plummeted, according to Morningstar.

Investment funds focused on sustainability goals have lost $2.7 billion in the third quarter of 2023 and they have been closing faster than they are opening during the same period, according to Morningstar. U.S. funds experienced withdrawals overall, but ESG funds experienced a significantly worse decline than their counterparts, facing four straight quarters of outflows as investors have lost interest due to regulatory scrutiny and concerns about returns.

ESG funds lost .85% of their value while funds in general lost .02% in the past three months, according to Morningstar. More traditional funds started in the third quarter than closed.

Three ESG funds launched while 13 closed during the three-month period, according to Morningstar.

“For the first time in recent history, sustainable fund departures outpaced arrivals,” Morningstar Researcher Alyssa Stankiewicz wrote.

ESG funds boomed in 2021, but American investors no longer find them appealing due to increased regulatory scrutiny, according to Reuters. Republican politicians also have accused the funds — which claim to support ethical practices such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing workplace diversity — of boycotting certain industries and costing retirees their savings.

Investing giant BlackRock shut down two smaller funds with several million in assets each during the three-month period, according to Morningstar. It closed BlackRock U.S. Impact Fund and BlackRock International Impact Fund after they were on the market for three years.

BlackRock CEO Larry Fink said in June at the Aspen Ideas Festival that he will not use the term “ESG” anymore, citing the term’s political connotation, Axios reported.

“I’m ashamed of being part of this conversation,” Fink stated.

BlackRock did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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