Goldman Sachs reportedly under investigation over ESG funds

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Banking giant Goldman Sachs is being investigated by US regulator Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over its ESG funds, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Reports state that the probe focuses on the mutual funds business in Goldman Sachs’ asset management arm and whether claims around ESG on specific funds live up to how they are marketed.

Goldman Sachs was contacted for a comment by our sister publication ESG Clarity, however, it did not reply in time for publication.

In further steps to clamp down on greenwashing, the SEC recently proposed two major rule changes — one for investment product names and another for ESG disclosures made by advisers and investment companies.

The SEC also fined BNY Mellon Investment Adviser $1.5m (£1.2m, €1.4m) for “mis-statements and omissions” regarding ESG investment processes in a number of funds.

Recent activity

The reports follow news earlier this month of the chief executive of German asset manager DWS resigning after the firm’s offices in Frankfurt were raided amid an investigation into greenwashing.

Federal police and officers from German financial regulator BaFin raided the premises and held meetings with staff in the wake of an investigation launched by the regulator last summer into allegations of breaches of ESG requirements.

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