Morgan Stanley picks top four US ESG stocks

Morgan Stanley analyst Stephen Boyd has published a list of the best US ESG stocks based on the bank’s rate-of-change metric.

The “Rate of change” metric refers to a framework used by the bank to find companies that are making ESG advancements, are up and coming and may have their socially conscious work overlooked.

These are four top “rate of change” stocks for the Americas that are traded in the US:

Deere: Management commentary implies the large agriculture cycle could remain strong in 2023 and continue through 2024. Deere has underperformed the S&P 500 this year, down 1.7% compared with the index’s 2% advance but the stock outperformed last year, rising 25% while the S&P dropped 19.4%.

Eastman Chemical: The materials company noted that all the major equipment has been installed in its molecular recycling factory in Kingsport, Tenn., which it expects to have running by mid 2023. Management estimates that the Kingsport plant will have a 15% rate of return for the company, while the other plants will likely be closer to 12%. Eastman fell 32.6% last year. The stock is up 1.4% in 2023.

New Fortress Energy: Saw its shares surge 75.7% in 2022, but has lost 22% this year. Late last month, the company reported adjusted earnings per share above the consensus estimate of analysts, while its revenue and adjusted EBITDA came in below analysts’ expectations.

Nu Holdings: A Brazilian digital banking company that trades on the New York Stock Exchange. The company’s shares are up 16% this year after plunging 56.6% in 2022. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway invested $500 million into the bank in 2021.