Divesting is hard. So groups short oil companies on Wall Street

Gabriel Thoumi, a financial analyst and director of capital markets at Climate Advisers, said he talked with Litterman several years ago about the swap.

The phenomenon of stranded assets dates back many years and doesn’t apply to energy companies alone, he pointed out.

“My great grandparents might still have a horse, buggy and whip at home that they could theoretically use,” Thoumi said. “But they don’t.”

At least two niche investment funds — Green Alpha Advisors and Green Century Funds — are using a strategy similar to Litterman’s, he said. And hedge funds are taking short positions against stranded-asset investments, too, he added.

“Bob is saying that you should invest in where the new economy is going,” Thoumi said, “instead of investing in outdated processes.”

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