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How to make financial analysis more long term; new study

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development constitutes a roadmap for where we, as a society that includes the private sector, need to go in just over ten years until 2030. A study from Stockholm Sustainable Finance Centre (SSFC) and Swesif shows that half of buy-side analysts as well as corporate investor relations officers think that sell-side financial research has a detrimental short-term focus. More than a third of sell-side financial analysts agree with this.

The study initiated by Swesif and published in Stockholm on 28 May was prompted by a general concern over undue short-termism in financial markets generally and financial analysis specifically. It is set in Sweden and based on a survey from both buy-side and sell-side analysts as well as investor relations officers. Questions aimed at finding out what each group sees as a long-term perspective, to what extent respondents perceive long-term questions to be addressed in investment analysis, and what factors they see as standing in the way of a more long-term perspective.

"We have looked at how different actors in investment analysis define 'long-term' for themselves, and how they address long-term questions in investment analysis," says Emma Sjöström, SSFC Deputy Director of and one of the report's three authors. "We arrive at a number of propositions to actors in investment analysis that could help bring more of a long-term perspective into the capital market conversation."

The authors, Emma Sjöström, Hanna Setterberg and Gregor Vulturius hope this study will spur this much-needed discussion. They also acknowledge the key role which broad-based initiatives such as the European Commission's Action Plan on financing sustainable growth, and the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) have in realising more long-term focus.

"The quest for politicians, businesses and investors to think broader and beyond the usual horizons is more significant than ever, as the window of opportunity to deliver on the goals agreed in the 2030 Agenda, and the targets set forth in the Paris Agreement is closing," says Anita Lindberg, Chair of Swesif. "With this research, we wanted to inform the conversation on how 'long term' is defined by different actors in investment analysis and hope to address some of the barriers in our work forward."

For interviews or further information, please contact:

Anita Lindberg, Chair of Swesif
Swesif@swesif.org +46 70 165 47 22

Dr. Emma Sjöström, Deputy Program Director, SSFC and Researcher at Stockholm School of Economics (SSE)
Emma.sjostrom@hhs.se +46 70 536 0422

Gregor Vulturius, Research Fellow, Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI)
Gregor.vulturius@sei.org +46 73 460 48 51

Andrea Lindblom, Communication Lead, Stockholm Sustainable Finance Centre
andrea.lindblom@sei.org +46 73 345 05 71

Stockholm Sustainable Finance Centre (SSFC)
Stockholm Sustainable Finance Centre is a unique collaboration between Stockholm Environment Institute and Stockholm School of Economics. It aims to accelerate and promote the shift in capital investments required to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and climate targets in the Paris Agreement. SSFC performs independent research, and knowledge and capacity building on current and future issues on sustainable economy and finance.

Swesif (Sweden's Forum for Sustainable Investments)
Swesif is an independent association founded in 2003 and has approximately 105 members, most of whom are asset owners and asset managers. Swesif brings together the forces working for and with sustainable investment in Sweden, aiming to increase knowledge about sustainable investments and providing a network for the exchange of knowledge and experience on this subject.

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