ESG Controversy Top Movers

Week ending April 30th, 2023

In this week's report:

  • British American Tobacco will pay £512m for violating sanctions by selling cigarettes to North Korea;
  • General Mills issued a voluntary recall for Gold Medal flour over salmonella concerns, and Akorn is recalling drug products due to a company shutdown, and
  • Several companies have announced corporate layoffs including Dropbox, Gap, IBM's Red Hat, and Clubhouse.

Another bank failure, but not another controversy. First Republic Bank is present in this week's report for the layoffs it had announced during its earnings call, but we make no mention of its weekend sale to JP Morgan Chase. We certainly detected over 14,000 events related to First Republic Bank last week, but in itself, the run on the bank is not a controversy — only an economic event. As a result, it is not included in this week's ranking.

Company
Category
Momentum  
Event
First Republic Bank (California)

layoffs

First Republic Bank also expects to cut its workforce by 20-25% this quarter, it said late Monday during its first-quarter earnings call.
Dropbox Inc.

layoffs

Dropbox to cut workforce by 16%, hire new talent for AI-powered products.
British American Tobacco PLC

sanctions-target

British American Tobacco is to pay £512m to US authorities after a subsidiary admitted selling cigarettes to North Korea in violation of sanctions.
Gap Inc.

layoffs

Gap to cut 1,800 jobs, joining the growing list of corporate layoffs.
Lazard Ltd.

layoffs

Investment Bank Lazard reported a surprise loss in Q1. They plan to cut 10% of the workforce in 2023.
General Mills Inc.

product-recall

General Mills issued a voluntary recall for Gold Medal flour over the potential presence of salmonella.
Red Hat Inc.

layoffs

Open source solution provider, IBM's Red Hat will lay off nearly 4 percent of its global workforce, or about 760 employees
Akorn Inc.

product-recall

Akorn, an American pharmaceuticals manufacturer recalls various drug products due to the company shut down.
Micron Technology Inc.

sanctions-target

US urges South Korea not to fill chip shortfalls in China if Micron chips are banned.
Alpha Exploration Co. Inc.

layoffs

Clubhouse, the once-hyped audio app that took off during the pandemic is laying off more than half of its workforce.

It's often difficult to follow all the news to build a complete picture about a company, particularly when events are less reported. Yet published research has identified how selecting stocks and bonds with low controversy profile captures more alpha and lowers risk.

Leveraging local and global newswire coverage, the RavenPack controversy framework allows investors to identify companies involved in controversial events. Each week we publish a selection of controversy identified on a different universe.

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