The integration of conventional equity indices with environmental, social, and governance indices: Evidence from emerging economies

Ramiz Ur Rehman, Muhammad Zain Ul Abidin, Rizwan Ali*, Safwan Mohd Nor*, Muhammad Akram Naseem, Mudassar Hasan, Muhammad Ishfaq Ahmad

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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This study investigates the integration of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) equity indices with conventional indices in Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (BRICS) individually and across all BRICS countries to better understand regional economic cooperation. Accordingly, we look at daily returns from 13 July 2013 to 28 February 2018 for the Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) ESG indices and MSCI composite indices of the respective countries. To analyze the integration between the ESG equity indices of the sampled countries with their regional and across regional conventional counterparts, the Johansen Co-integration test is employed in this study. Further, the vector error correction model (VECM) is applied to test the causality between the sampled time-series. The impulse response function analysis further explains the impulse responses of each country’s MSCI ESG returns to one standard deviation of innovations to MSCI composite returns of the same country and across countries. Finally, the extent of the MSCI composite returns’ impact on the MSCI ESG returns in the same country indices, and cross-regional indices is examined with variance decomposition analysis. The results suggest that all ESG equity indices are integrated with conventional indices in all BRICS countries. Furthermore, there is a short-or long-run causality between MSCI ESG and MSCI composite equity indices of China and South Africa. Moreover, the study finds only short-run causality between conventional and non-conventional equity indices of Brazil and Russia, whereas we find only long-run causality between India’s non-conventional and conventional equity indices. Finally, the study finds that the all-individual country MSCI ESG equity indices shows a long-run causality with MSCI composite equity indices of all other BRICS countries. The findings also confirm the economic and financial cooperation between the BRICS countries.

Original languageEnglish
Article number676
Pages (from-to)1-27
Number of pages27
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 12 Jan 2021
Externally publishedYes

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