Barclays Suspended from Texas Bond Market Over Lack of ESG Explanation

  • Texas AG Ken Paxton announced that, “until further notice,” Barclays is no longer permitted to purchase or underwrite public securities, or otherwise be a party to a covered contract relating to the public security, after Barclays indicated it would not respond to requests for information regarding its alleged “net zero” carbon emissions commitments.
  • As stated in the letter, Barclays was one of several companies who AG Paxton had previously identified in an All Bond Counsel letter as being under review due to alleged membership in a net zero alliance. AG Paxton’s office asserts that Barclays indicated that it was unable to respond to questions regarding its environmental, social, and governance (ESG) commitments, leading to AG Paxton’s rescission of Barclays’ eligibility to participate in Texas’ bond market.
  • We have previously reported on Republican AGs’ efforts to fight ESG-based investing, including most recently Tennessee AG Jonathan Skrmetti’s lawsuit against BlackRock, Inc. and a letter written by a group of Republican AGs to proxy advisory firms warning them to cease prioritizing ESG initiatives.