Another strong year for the Global LAMP Index®

During 2017 the Global LAMP Index® and the select LAMP Focus Group had total returns of 28.13% and 27.72% respectively – surpassing by wide margins their global comparators: the MSCI World and FTSE World Indices plus the S&P Global 100, whose returns averaged 23.17%.

For people new to this blog, the Global LAMP Index® is a learning lab of 60 companies. Initiated in 1995, it tracks an emerging shift in corporate culture: one that places a higher value on living assets (people and Nature) than on non-living capital assets. This practice, called Living Asset Stewardship (LAS), coincides with a renaissance in executive leadership towards systems thinking and away from the older theology of linear bottom-line-first thinking.

In creating the LAMP60, I aimed to identify best-of-breed companies in LAS within a diverse sample of global industries. Given the complexity of this undertaking and the fact that defining LAS was a continual work in progress, the final version of the LAMP 60 wasn’t completed until 2004. Index performance in the table below is based on the final 2004 list. Since that year, there have been only six changes in the LAMP60 – mostly due to mergers and acquisitions. This gives Index performance an integrity that other indices with higher turnover rates notably lack.

Investment results for all indices must be considered in the context of disturbing economic events: the extreme weight of global debt and unfunded liabilities relative to GDP; the disruptive potential of derivatives markets (which caused the 2008 market crash); and damages global economies are causing to the biosphere via ecological overstep and climate change.

The rise of equity markets everywhere in the face of such challenges has been largely due to central bank money printing. This has created a giant financial bubble in all sectors. We thought the bubble would pop years ago when it surpassed the extremes of 2008. But it didn’t.

Nevertheless, whether markets are risky or fair, quality will out. In aggregate, the LAMP60 has returned more than 2,000% since inception. On a compounded basis, that’s more than four times competitor indices. The Focus Group, which reflects LAS best practices within the LAMP60 has done even better.

That said, the question remains: what’s likely to happen when global markets correct? Will LAMP companies again outperform as they have done in the past? While history may or may not repeat, it’s worth noting that in the bear market years of 2000 – 2002 the LAMP60 lost only 11.6% (versus losses of 40% or more by its global comparators); and in the crash years of 2008 – 2009, it lost only 7.6% (versus 20% or more by its comparators).

Returns of the LAMP60 and Focus Group have been independently verified by Northfield Information Services ( from 1995 through 2015. Results for 2016 and 2017 are based on data obtained from MarketWatch. My recently published book, Companies That Mimic Life, lists all 60 LAMP companies and reveals the formula for their astonishing success through 7 instructive case studies.

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