New Hire at ADP Helped S&P 500 Boards Gain 15 Women in November

omen in November

By Jeff GreenDecember 11, 2020, 5:30 PM GMT+5:30

  • Two Black women were among new directors at 16 companies
  • The percentage of women on S&P 500 boards rose to 28.5%

Automatic Data Processing Inc. and Hasbro Inc. were among the S&P 500 companies that added female directors last month, for a net gain of 15 more women on boards than in October.

ADP appointed Linnie Haynesworth, a retired Northrop Grumman Corp. cyber security expert, and Hasbro Inc. nominated former Women’s National Basketball Association President Laurel Richie, adding two more Black female directors to the index. Bringing a fourth woman onto the board also put ADP at its highest-ever number of female directors, the company said, and pushed it past the threshold of 30% female membership.

S&P 500 companies, already under pressure to add more women to boards, have been appointing more Black directors in the wake of protests over the killing of George Floyd and elevated Covid-19 death rates for minorities.

The average number of female directors was unchanged at 3.2, out of an average board size of 11.2. The percentage of female directorships rose to 28.5% from 28.4%.

  • 16 companies increased the number of women on their boards; the largest companies by market capitalization were Visa Inc., Nvidia Corp. and Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.
  • Two companies reduced the number of female directors: Monster Beverage Corp. and Sysco Corp.
  • The real estate sector led the net gain in female board members, with one woman added to the boards at Crown Castle International Corp. and Weyerhaeuser Co.
  • Consumer staples notched a net decline of one woman director, with Monster and Sysco losing female board members.
  • ADP surpassed 30% female board membership for the first time since at least January 2019. The number of S&P 500 companies above this key threshold rose to 226 in November from 225 the previous month.
  • The Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index returned 15% in November, outperforming the MSCI World Index, which returned 13%.
  • The Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index is a modified capitalization-weighted index that tracks the financial performance of those companies committed to supporting gender equality through policy development, representation and transparency.

S&P 500 companies with the highest and lowest percentage of female board members:

Best Buy Co.56
L. Brands Inc.56
General Motors Co.55
Omnicom Group Inc.55
ViacomCBS Inc.54
Autodesk Inc.50
Celanese Corp.50
Etsy Inc.50
Healthpeak Properties Inc.50
Procter & Gamble Co.50
Qorvo Inc.11
FleetCor Technologies Inc.10
Monster Beverage Corp.10
Dollar Tree Inc.9
Kraft Heinz Co.9
Las Vegas Sands Corp.9
TransDigm Group Inc.9
Discovery Inc.8
Lennar Corp.8
Charter Communications Inc.7

The analysis is based on data that covers 496 companies in the S&P 500. Historical analysis may be affected by changes to the index membership. Board changes are effective at month’s end.

To see the percentage of women on a company board: {FA ESGG <GO>}

To see the percentage of female directors for each of the S&P 500 companies: {SPX Index GX <GO>}. In search box on top right, choose “% Women on Board.” Mouse over to get each company’s results.


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