SINGAPORE (June 3): The hottest acronym in asset management is ESG. Funds that take account of environmental, social and governance factors when deploying capital have sucked up more than US$1 trillion ($1.38 trillion) so far. More of them are becoming activist investors, too.

In the week of May 20 alone, Amazon.com, JP Morgan Chase & Co and BP faced votes at their annual meetings about issues varying from gender diversity to climate risks to the use of artificial intelligence. Chevron and Exxon Mobil are due to face similar scrutiny in the week of May 27.

Along with support from politicians and younger investors, such broad interest from fund houses should ensure further growth. But the sector’s success could create new problems. We offer a guide through the ethical maze.

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