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Environmental information: A study of environmental disclosure in financial analyst reports, annual reports, CSR reports and environmental risk profiles
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
2008 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The awareness of environmental issues has increased among the public the last decades. An environmental movement is occurring and companies are beginning to adapt themselves and their business activities to the changing view of environmental issues. Greater attention are turning to companies around the world due to the view that they have a responsibility concerning environmental and sustainability matters in their business operations. The development of environmental guidelines such as the Global Reporting Initiative and the presenting of separate Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) reports illustrate the emerged demand of an environmental awareness from various stakeholders. Government regulations and inter-continental agreements of carbon taxes, emission trade rights and various environmental targets are influencing the operations and the environmental approach for the companies.

An important link in the information chain is the financial analysts and their role as information intermediaries. The characteristics of their profession combined with their expertise knowledge of evaluating companies are reasons behind their function in the investment value chain. Traditionally, the valuation of companies has been based on financial figures and the models derive from typical tangible assets such growth numbers, estimated future earnings and cash flow. Environmental issues have throughout the years been considered of secondary importance due to the specific kind of information it represents.

This study examines factors influencing the amount of environmental information presented in financial analyst reports. The amount of environmental information presented in annual reports, CSR reports and an environmental risk profile developed by GES Investment Services have been selected as predictor variables to determine the amount of environmental information in the financial analysts’ reports.

40 companies from the industrial sector have been included in the study and the results reveal that no or very little environmental information can be found in the financial analyst reports. The financial analysts’ seem to prioritize other kinds of information when evaluating companies and creating analyst reports. The study also reveals that companies with separate CSR reports seem to have a higher amount of environmental information presented in annual reports as well as a better environmental risk profile.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. , 31 p.
Keyword [en]
Enviromental information, CSR, Corporate Social Responsibility, environmental disclosure, environmental risk, risk profiles, financial analysts
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-24589OAI: diva2:226795
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2009-09-07 Created: 2009-07-04 Last updated: 2009-09-07Bibliographically approved

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Boström, Daniel
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