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S&P drops ESG scores from debt ratings amid scrutiny

FT | August 8, 2023

S&P Global has stopped handing out scores to corporate borrowers on ESG criteria, at a time of rising questions about their utility and political attacks on such metrics. The debt rating agency has since 2021 published scores from one to five for a company’s exposure to each element of environmental, social and governance risks. Payments company Visa, for example, had received a two for “E” and “S” and a three for “G”. FirstEnergy, an Ohio utility that has been charged with corruption, received a four score for “G”, S&P’s second-lowest grade. Late last week S&P reversed course, saying that only text, not numerical scores, would comprise analysis of a company’s ESG matters.


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