“Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced that the state has banned Barclays from participating as an underwriter in Texas’ municipal bond market, following the company’s failure to respond to requests for information over its ESG policies…
Barclays was identified as a potential ‘fossil fuel boycotter’ due to its participation in a net zero alliance, and was sent a letter in November, alongside other banks including Bank of America, J.P. Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo, among others, asking for more information concerning its ESG commitments… Barclays informed the AG that it would not be able to respond to the inquiry, leading to the ruling that ‘until further notice, we will not approve any public security issued on or after today’s date in which Barclays purchases or underwrites the public security or is otherwise a party to a covered contract relating to the public security.'”
One bank’s actions may not change the tide, but it comes at a time when even the state is itself looking for work-arounds and other states with anti-ESG laws face the cost of defending them. Questions still remain about whether such laws are even effective – for any purpose other than political theater.
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