Questions about vaccine roll-outs and about protection against COVID variants coincided this week with an upward move in the percentage of COVID-related ESG content to 23% from recent levels in the low 20s.
The COVID-19 Response Signal remains in double digits, where it has been since December vaccine roll-outs. Likewise, the Economy Signal indicating COVID economic impacts has remained at or below 12% of data volume since mid-December, as vaccine distribution and declining case numbers in recent weeks signal light at the end of the tunnel for many economic activities.
The SASB category of Access & Affordability expanded its lead over all others in share of total COVID-19 news, edging upwards as vaccine access remains top-of-mind around the world.
The “S” in ESG - the Social dimension - has the plurality of ESG data in the past month, with ~40% levels holding after a dip during the early fall, when climate-related policy and severe weather events captured attention.
The percentages of European and U.S. company conversations related to COVID have plateaued in the range of the low 20s. This comes as U.S. new cases retreat below the 500,000 per week mark, with Europe not far behind.
The ratio of COVID-related content to non-COVID content has maintained an unusually high level of 350% in the past two weeks for Health Care Distributors and Biotechnology & Pharmaceuticals firms. That illustrates the relentless focus of stakeholders on vaccine distribution efforts.
The leading firm for COVID-19 Response Signal sentiment is the Chinese vaccine maker CanSino Biologics, which had a candidate approved by Chinese authorities.
Continuing with a focus on racial equality, we again highlight key recent Spotlight Events. This week, racial justice-related data shows banks stepping up on diversity and racial justice, with HSBC vowing to double its senior Black staff, and TCF Bank promising $1 billion in loans to minority and women-owned small businesses.