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Financial companies deny "boycott" of fossil fuel companies

Treasurer Riley Moore

Financial companies object to state treasurer allegations of boycotting fossil fuel companies.

Last month, West Virginia Treasurer Riley Moore sent letters to six investment companies warned the y may be ineligible for some West Virginia contracts if they boycott fossil fuel companies.

The warnings follow the passage of Senate Bill 262, that directs the state treasurer's office to maintain a list of financial institutions that avoid investing in fossil fuel companies.

BlackRock Inc., Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo each denied they engaged in boycotts of fossil fuel companies. Moreover, the companies contend that they provide guidance to investors based on assessing risk.

A sixth company, U.S. Bancorp has until Wednesday to respond and has yet to do so.

West Virginia’s new law defines a “boycott” as a refusal to deal with a company without “a reasonable business purpose

The potential penalty on the companies is to be considered ineligible for banking contracts with the state. The Treasurer’s Offices manages roughly $18 billion in state government receipts on an annual basis.


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