Thursday , June 17 2021
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Tag Archives: Energy

Proxies

A correspondent asked for comment on the new ESG trend among asset managers. For example, BlackRock, and the recent Exxon upheaval with two new green directors (here, but cautionary WSJ coverage here, pointing out how empty the whole Exxon affair really is).  I'm sad to see even Vanguard (which has a lot of my money) going along on this...trend.  Could you offer some thoughts about the trend of asset managers voting more critically this year? Are the big fund firms like...

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The price of indulgences, 2021

 Source. My correspondent provides the answer: 5bps: IVV (column #3) (iShares Core S&P 500 ETF)15bps: ESGU (column #1)  (iShares ESG Aware MSCI USA ETF) 30bps: LCTU (column #2) (BlackRock U.S. Carbon Transition Readiness ETF) “Sea change” quote from BlackRock here I have not independently checked, though the answer hardly matters. The fees and portfolios tell the story. Obviously any claim that this ESG portfolio will outperform after fees is ......

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Infrastructure and jobs

William Gropper, Construction of the Dam, 1938To many on the left, it's always 1933. Building "roads and bridges" will "create jobs," soaking up the mass army of unemployed desperate for work that they seem to see. Driving around though, I notice that we build roads with big machines, not lots of people. And construction jobs are high-skill jobs, not people with shovels. "Shovel-ready" itself is a misnomer. Nobody uses shovels on a construction site anymore, they use a backhoe. Neither...

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Nuclear power and growth

Jason Crawford's "Roots of Progress" blog on what happened to nuclear power is an important read for many reasons, among them economic growth, climate, and regulation. It's a review of Why Nuclear Power Has Been a Flop by Jack Devanney which goes on my must-read list. Perhaps the important economic question of our time is this: Is growth over? Are we running out of ideas? Or is our decades-long growth slowdown the result of an increasingly sclerotic, over-regulated, crony-capitalist...

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A letter to Yellen

Secretary of the Treasury, and ex Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen recently hosted an important meeting of the Financial Stability Oversight Council.  This is the highest level body overseeing financial regulation in the US. It matters. Her remarks start smoothly but critically, as one expects of a habitually well-prepared pro. A lot went wrong last year, from the treasury markets to another mutual fund bailout, and so forth. Bravo, it is time to get past celebrating how another...

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Testimony on financial regulation and climate change

I had the honor of testifying at the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, on Protecting the Financial System from Risks Associated with Climate Change Full video at the link, I start at 48:30 with slightly abridged version of these remarks. Testimony of John H. Cochrane to US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Chairman Brown, Ranking Member Toomey and Members of the Committee: Thank you for the opportunity to testify today. I am John...

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Unintended consequences

The Dec 14 Wall Street Journal amplifies my warnings on the movement to de-fund fossil fuels by financial regulation, citing "climate risks." "The Senate Democrats’ Special Committee on the Climate Crisis recently issued a report detailing how the Fed and eight other regulatory agencies should penalize investment in fossil fuels and promote green energy. They claim financial institutions are underpricing the risk that carbon-intensive assets will become “stranded.”Mind you, their...

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Challenges for central banks.

On October 20, I was graciously invited to give a talk at the  ECB Conference on Monetary Policy: bridging science and practice. I survey six challenges facing central banks: 1. Interest rates and inflation; 2. Policy reviews; 3. Financial reform post 2008 4. New challenges to finance post covid; 5. The many risks ahead; 6. Central banks and climate.  For the whole thing, go here for a pdf. (The conference website will have video soon.) Items 1-5 are mostly interesting for...

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OECD talk — rebuilding institutions in the wake of Covid-19

Friday morning I had the pleasure of participating in a session at the OECD, as part of their program on Confronting Planetary Emergencies - Solving Human Problems. I had the tough job of following brilliant remarks by Acting CEA chair Tyler Goodspeed and Ken Rogoff, and discussing great questions all starting at 5 AM. FYI here is the text of my prepared remarks. My focus is how to rebuild the competence of our institutions, which failed dismally in this crisis. Covid and BeyondJohn...

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Smoke and Nukes

 I was driving in Northern California on Labor Day, contemplating the 1-2 mile visibility in thick smoke through the Central Valley, and listening to NPR, when an enticing story came along. Amna Nawaz:For a closer look at what's behind that heat wave and what's fueling these fires, I'm joined by Leah Stokes, she's a professor and researcher on climate, energy and political policy at the University of California, Santa BarbaraGreat, I thought. We're going to hear some real science...

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