United States: Goldman Sachs Says Humans Beat Algorithms When It Comes to ESG

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has found that successful sustainable investment decisions require a human touch that algorithms have so far been unable to match.

In Copenhagen, where Goldman is expanding to grab more of the cash-rich Nordic asset management market, smart environmental, social and governance investing calls are key to winning business. And as Nordic countries blaze a trail in all things ESG, whatever works in the region is likely to become a template for other parts of the world.

Thomas Konig, Goldman’s head of asset management in the Nordic region, says that to do “ESG, activism and stewardship, it requires people.”

“Some of it you can make quantitative, but definitely not all of it,” he said.

Goldman is adding 40% to its Nordic headcount, giving it better access to a savings industry that’s one of the world’s largest per capita. Investors in the region are among the most demanding when it comes to ESG, and asset managers are finding they have to adjust their offerings to win business.

“Clearly, active management has a role to play again,” Konig said. It’s “not just something that is fading out versus ETFs and private markets.”

The original full article can be found at bloomberg.com

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