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A Communication Guide for Investor Relations in an Age of Activism by John Gilfeather, David Michaelson, Marcia W. DiStaso

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CHAPTER 4

Investor Relations Ethics

In 2016, an international study (Edelman Trust Barometer 2016) found that 80 percent of survey respondents agreed with the statement that “A company can take specific actions that both increase profits and improve the economic and social conditions in the community where it operates” (p. 10). The study also found that 50 percent of survey respondents agreed that “exhibiting ethical behavior” and behaving in a way that is “transparent and open” were important (p. 14). Integrity was seen as being the most important trust-building attribute.

Yet business is not seen to be living up to these ideals. Trust in business has been extremely low. The same study conducted a year earlier (Edelman Trust Barometer 2015) ...

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