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Exxon, Microsoft, Target Added to Dow Jones Index; IBM Dropped

Exxon, Microsoft, Canadian National Railway and Target are among the largest companies added to, and IBM, GlaxoSmithKline and United Technologies among those dropped from, one of the world’s leading sustainability indices.

Swiss-based investment firm SAM and Dow Jones Indexes released the 2012 Dow Jones Sustainability Index review, which tracks the financial performance of leading sustainability-driven companies worldwide, adding 41 companies, while removing 41 firms, for a total of 340 companies.

Other notable additions this year include Hewlett Packard, which had been dropped from the index last year; retailer H&M; oil and gas companies Baker Hughes and Cenovus Energy; and chemical maker Linde.

Other deletions this year include Telefonica, Mitsubishi Corp., utility Duke Energy, banking firm UBS, insurance company ING, and Societe Generale, which was added just last year.

The largest North American companies added to the list included Exxon, Microsoft, Altria, Goldcorp, oil and gas company Enbridge, Waste Management, Liberty Global, TE Connectivity and industrial goods firm Ecolab. The largest North American companies dropped from the index included Dell, Verizon, Time Warner, Potash Corp., TransCanada, Allergan and Bank of New York Mellon.

SAM invites the world’s 2,500 largest companies, based on free-float market capitalization, from 58 sectors to report annually on their sustainability performance. SAM then carries out a Corporate Sustainability Assessment, an in-depth analysis of economic, environmental and social criteria, for each participating company.

Each year, SAM identifies the top company in each of the 19 super sectors (see graphic) derived from the 58 sectors. Automaker BMW, chemical company Akzo Nobel, Unilever, Roche Holding, Siemens and Spanish utility Iberdrola were among the top companies in their respective super sectors this year.

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