Academy of Accounting and Financial Studies Journal (Print ISSN: 1096-3685; Online ISSN: 1528-2635)


The Impact of Financial Performance on Governance Factor and Environmental Social Governance (ESG) Rating. Does Cash Performance Matter in Italy?

Author(s): Daniele Gasbarro, Francesco Paolone

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has always been central in accounting and business studies, even before the introduction of specific regulatory constraints, having been brought back into the notion of overall economic equilibrium. The existing literature has identified that, in most cases, there is a positive relationship between CSR performance, expressed by ESG rating, and financial performance, mostly expressed by ratios on profitability and/or liquidity analyses. Our model is tested on a sample of Italian listed companies collected from the database Refinitiv Eikon, relatively to the 2021 financial year. The companies in the financial, banking and insurance sectors were not analyzed in the sample selection process. The final sample consists of 86 Italian companies. This contribution is intended to investigate, given the limited nature of the studies carried out, whether cash flow has a positive impact on the G (Governance) rating as well as on the overall ESG rating. The study uses the OLS statistical method, with particular reference to the linear regression method. This highlighted the existence of a positive relationship in both cases, although it is higher with regard to the ESG rating.

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