PODCAST: ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

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ESG funds, stocks, outperforming their ‘conventional’ counterparts in markets’ downturn. Several analysts believe now is a good time to buy these stocks and funds. See which ones they recommend! Investors should also consider artificial intelligence and infrastructure stocks too. With companies reducing or eliminating dividends, one dividend-paying socially responsible stock comes highly regarded. And More

PODCAST: ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

Transcript & Links, Episode 29, April 10, 2020

Hello, Ron Robins here. Welcome to podcast episode 29 for April 10, 2020, titled “ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.”—presented by Investing for the Soul. investingforthesoul.com is your site for vital global ethical and sustainable investing news, commentary, information, and resources.

Remember that you can find a full transcript, links to content – including stock symbols – and bonus material at this episode’s podcast page located at investingforthesoul.com/podcasts.

And, Google any terms that are unfamiliar to you.

Now with the recent market turnaround, many investors are feeling a sense of relief and thinking beyond the COVID-19 turmoil! With that in mind, the analysts’ research I’m reporting on now might be of interest to you.

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1) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

So, let’s start with the first research comment that illustrates again the ESG funds, stocks, opportunities in this downturn. This comment is titled ESG ETFs Appear Unscathed by the Coronavirus Carnage by Zacks analyst Sanghamitra Saha.

She writes that” Wall Street just recorded the worst quarter since the fourth quarter of 2008. But ESG ETFs appeared somewhat resilient to the acute selloffs.” End quote. Ms. Saha cites the following ESG ETFs as having gained significant assets during the sell-off. They are:

Global X Conscious Companies ETF (KRMA). Quote “Its top holdings are Regeneron, Clorox, Biogen, Newmont, Netflix and Amazon.” End quote.

Next is SP Funds S&P 500 Sharia Industry Exclusions ETF (SPUS). Quote “The underlying S&P 500 Sharia Industry Exclusions Index comprises the constituents of the S&P 500 Sharia Index other than those from the following sub-industries: Aerospace & Defense, Financial Exchanges & Data, and Data Processing & Outsourced Services…” End quote.

Finally, the Nuveen ESG Mid-Cap Growth ETF (NUMG). Again, quoting her she says that “It uses a rules-based methodology that provides investment exposure that generally replicates that of mid-cap growth benchmarks through a portfolio of securities that adhere to predetermined ESG, controversial business involvement and low-carbon screening criteria.” End quote.

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2) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

Now a post for those ethical and sustainable investors wishing to get back into the markets with individual stocks. Ian Jenkins has written an article titled 6 Stocks Cashing In On The $30 Trillion Impact Investing Trend that appears on the oilprice.com site. Here are his six picks.

Now I’m just going to name the company and then follow it with a short quote by Mr. Jenkins on that company.

Alphabet (GOOGL). “Is a shining star in the tech world. Despite being one of the largest companies on the planet, in many ways it has lived up to its original ‘Don’t Be Evil’ slogan.”

Facedrive Inc. (FD.V). “For the first time in ride-sharing history, Facedrive is giving customers a choice to be more environmentally conscious. That’s because it’s utilizing new technology to calculate the estimated CO2 emissions for each ride and allocating a portion of the proceeds accordingly to local organizations to help offset those emissions.”

Apple Inc. (AAPL). “Not only have they decreased their average product’s energy use by 70 percent… They’ve reduced their total carbon footprint by more than 35 percent in just a few short years…”

Microsoft Inc. (MSFT). “It’s pushing so hard that it is aiming to be carbon NEGATIVE by 2030. That’s a huge pledge. And if anyone can do it, it’s Microsoft.”

NextEra Energy (NEE). “[The] world’s leading producer of wind and solar energy… By 2025, the company aims to reduce their own emissions by 67 percent while doubling their electricity production from a 2005 benchmark.”

Lastly, Total (TOT). “One of the world’s largest oil and gas companies… Through its subsidiaries and new investments, Total is making major waves in the ‘green revolution.’” End quotes.

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3) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

Do you favour tech stocks like most ethical and sustainable investors? Then you might want to see the recommendations of Billy Duberstein. His article is titled 3 Top Artificial Intelligence Stocks to Buy in April and appeared on The Motley Fool site.

Here are the stocks he recommends with each followed by a quote from him.

Lam Research (NASDAQ: LRCX). “Makes the machines that allow chipmakers to produce smaller, more powerful chips.”

Alteryx (NYSE: AYX). “Its main product is an end-to-end, comprehensive software suite, which allows both data scientists and non-data scientists to work together building and deploying machine learning algorithms.”

Micron Technology (NASDAQ: MU). “Micron's product portfolio will be essential to future artificial intelligence applications, which will require lots and lots of DRAM memory and NAND flash storage. In addition to these products, Micron is also one of only two companies to have 3D Xpoint, a new kind of non-volatile memory that is faster than NAND, though also more expensive. Micron is the only company to have all three technologies.” End quotes.

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4) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

It appears that the next big US fiscal stimulus plan may involve huge spending on infrastructure. Due to this many investors are looking for companies engaged in that sector to buy into.

In her post on the Motley Fool site, Neha Chamaria writes about 3 Top Infrastructure Stocks to Watch in April. They are – and again followed by a quote from her on each company.

Nucor (NYSE: NUE). “Nucor is North America's largest manufacturer and supplier of critical infrastructure steel and steel products.”

Vulcan Materials (NYSE: VMC). “Vulcan is the nation's largest manufacturer of construction aggregates, primarily crushed stone, gravel, and sand, as well as a major producer of asphalt and concrete.”

Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT). “If infrastructure spending picks up, Caterpillar should be a leading indicator as the world's largest construction-and-mining equipment manufacturer.” End quotes.

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5) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

Ms. Chamaria has also written a post titled 3 Top Renewable Energy Stocks to Buy in April, also on the Motley Fool site. So, following the same format as previously, I’ll say the company followed by a quote from her.

NextEra Energy Partners (NYSE: NEP). “NextEra Energy Partners was formed in 2014, when NextEra Energy (NYSE: NEE) spun-off its solar and wind energy projects to form an exclusive clean-energy focused limited partnership.”

Brookfield Renewable Partners (NYSE: BEP). “One of the best diversified renewable energy stocks you can find. While NextEra Energy Partners is focused on wind and solar, Brookfield Renewable specializes in hydropower, or the generation of electricity from water streams.”

TPI Composites (NASDAQ: TPIC). “The world's largest independent composite wind-blade manufacturer.” End quotes.

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6) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

With this downturn, many investors are finding that dividends they’d become used to from stocks are being cut or even eliminated. Thus, those looking for dividends to provide income has become a real concern!

Now, this might be helpful to you in that regard. BNK Invest has published an article titled FirstEnergy a Top Socially Responsible Dividend Stock With 3.9% Yield (FE). They write that “FirstEnergy Corp (FE) has been named a Top Socially Responsible Dividend Stock by Dividend Channel, signifying a stock with above-average ‘DividendRank’ statistics including a strong 3.9% yield, as well as being recognized by prominent asset managers as being a socially responsible investment, through analysis of social and environmental criteria.” End quote.

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7) ESG Funds, Stocks. Opportunities in Downturn.

Tom Lydon of ETF Trends is making the case for green bonds at this juncture. In a post titled Going Green With Bonds Is a Winning Idea he recommends the VanEck Vectors Green Bond ETF (NYSEArca: GRNB).

He writes that “The VanEck Vectors Green Bond ETF tracks the S&P Green Bond Select Index, which is ‘comprised of labeled green bonds that are issued to finance environmentally friendly projects, and includes bonds issued by the supranational, government, and corporate issuers globally in multiple currencies,’ according to VanEck.” End quote.

Here's another interesting item from his article. Mr. Lydon quotes Thomas Wacker, head of credit at UBS Global Wealth and reported in Bloomberg reports as saying that “Sustainable bonds are a ‘defensive opportunity’ that credit investors should favor over non-green, investment-grade corporate notes,’” End quote.

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End Comment

Well, these are my top news stories and tips for ethical and sustainable investors over the past two weeks.

And to get all the links, stock symbols and more, or to read the transcript of this podcast and with additional information too, please go to investingforthesoul.com/podcasts and scroll down to this episode.

Also, be sure to click the like and subscribe buttons in iTunes/Apple Podcasts or wherever you download or listen to this podcast.

And, please click the share buttons to share this podcast with your friends and family. That way you can help promote not only this podcast but ethical and sustainable investing globally. So, let’s help create a better world with our investments!

Contact me if you have any questions.

Do stay well and healthy – and most wise with your investments at this extraordinary time.

Thank you for listening.

Talk to you again on April 24. Bye for now.

© 2020 Ron Robins, Investing for the Soul.

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