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EU Watchdog Criticizes BlackRock Appointment as ESG Adviser (1)

Nov. 25, 2020, 9:53 AM

The European Commission failed to fully consider conflicts of interest when it appointed BlackRock Inc. to advise on new sustainable-finance rules for banks, according to a ruling by the European Union’s watchdog.

The EU’s executive body “did not provide sufficient guarantees to exclude any legitimate doubt” of potential conflicts of interest when it hired the world’s largest asset-management firm, according to the Wednesday ruling by EU ombudsman Emily O’Reilly. The decision has no legal power to force the Commission to cancel the mandate, but may pressure the body to do so.

The decision is a small win for environmentalists, who have long targeted BlackRock because ...

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