Schroder, who at the beginning of the year said he would be in with a formal announcement some time in the future, yesterday proclaimed that in the more than 30 state trust funds over which he has control he would drop investment firm BlackRock products over the next three months. He said he would divest around $800 million worth because of the company’s outspoken support of investment goals that include discriminating against corporations in the fossil fuel sector, noting that introducing politicized investment objectives interferes with a fiduciary responsibility to maximize the value of state deposits on behalf of its citizens.
The announcement was very welcome, if not long overdue. Almost a year ago West Virginia made the same move, adding that BlackRock’s problematic Chinese holdings contributed to the decision, and like Louisiana is a part of a coalition of states that pledged to investigate investment firms that practiced viewpoint discrimination. That move came about a month after the pledge, with its subject matter Schroder saying back then he would review and take action.