Many ASX200 companies failing to comply with ASX gender diversity reporting recommendations: BlackRock report

Healthcare property continues to show value: AUI
July 22, 2014
Select launches Neuberger Berman ARMS Trust
July 24, 2014

78% of ASX200 companies’ gender diversity reporting is perfunctory or worse, according to BlackRock.

BlackRock’s review of the 2013 annual reports of companies included in the Standard & Poor’s/ ASX200 stockmarket index has ranked 3% of disclosures surrounding gender diversity as ‘excellent’, 19% as ‘good’ and the others perfunctory, poor or generally non-disclosing.

This investigation is the third BlackRock has undertaken into the gender diversity policies and disclosures of Australia’s top 200 listed companies. It is based on information revealed in response to gender diversity disclosure and policy principles required by the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) in its Corporate Governance Principles.

BlackRock’s ratings of 2013 disclosures surrounding gender diversity
Rating Number %
Excellent 6 3
Good 38 19
Perfunctory 89 46
Poor 33 17
If Not Why Not 7 4
Non-complying 22 11

 

Companies rated as having ‘excellent’ gender diversity disclosures
·        Mirvac Group·        Perpetual Limited

·        Graincorp Limited

·        Telstra Corporation Limited

·        Westfield Group

·        Westpac Banking Corporation

Pru Bennett, BlackRock’s corporate governance and responsible investment director – head of Asia Pacific, said: “Companies such as Mirvac Group should be applauded for their continued commitment to disclosure.

“However, the majority of companies are still applying a largely minimal standard mindset to the reporting of their diversity obligations.

“In the three years since our first report on diversity in Australia’s 200 largest listed companies, there has been some improvement but there is scope for more.

“To simply state a company has a diversity policy, list some objectives and disclose some statistics does not equate to good disclosure.

“We believe gender diversity can have positive ramifications for return on investment over the medium- to long-term.

“However, our findings show – despite the recommendations of the ASX on gender diversity – the current commitment to gender diversity is piecemeal and they could definitely do better.

“It appears from the board down, gender diversity is not included in the DNA of most companies.”

-oOo-

For a copy of the report or an interview with Pru Bennett please contact Deb Johnson on 03 9657 3149 or Kari Arnison on 02 9272 2339.

 About BlackRock

BlackRock is a leader in investment management, risk management and advisory services for institutional and retail clients worldwide. At June 30, 2014, BlackRock’s AUM was $4.594 trillion. BlackRock helps clients meet their goals and overcome challenges with a range of products that include separate accounts, mutual funds, iShares® (exchange-traded funds), and other pooled investment vehicles. BlackRock also offers risk management, advisory and enterprise investment system services to a broad base of institutional investors through BlackRock Solutions®. Headquartered in New York City, as of June 30, 2014, the firm had approximately 11,600 employees in more than 30 countries and a major presence in key global markets, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East and Africa. For additional information, please visit the Company’s website at www.blackrock.com.

iShares® and BlackRock® are registered trademarks of BlackRock, Inc., or its subsidiaries in the United States and elsewhere. © 2014 BlackRock, Inc. All rights reserved. All other trademarks, servicemarks or registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

23 July 2014