State Street Announces Proprietary ESG Scoring System, R-Factor

In May 2019, State Street announced the launch of its R-Factor scoring methodology to score companies on ESG issues. R-Factor is powered by ESG data from four different service providers, and State Street has indicated that companies’ R-Factor scores will power their investment and client reporting capabilities, and be fully integrated into its stewardship program. R-Factor leverages certain portions of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) standards published in the fall of 2018, which provide standards for sustainability metric reporting in 11 sectors and 77 industries. For environmental and social factors, R-Factor relies upon the sustainability metrics deemed relevant for the specified industries by the SASB standards, and focuses on these metrics as material because these metrics are deemed to be those that most impact financial performance. For governance factors, R-Factor relies on State Street’s internal stewardship principles and an outside data provider. The SASB standards were created by the SASB, a non-profit organization dedicated to identifying, managing and reporting on the sustainability topics that matter most to investors. In addition to use by State Street, ISS now includes an issuer’s SASB industry codifications in its reports with respect to issuers’ annual shareholder meetings.