The Biden Labor Department will soon finalize a new rule on environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) investments, and one big question remains: When will fiduciaries be permitted to take ESG values into account as they select investment options for 401(k) plans?

The Department of Labor, which has sent its final version of the rule to the White House for approval, has wrestled for more than 30 years with when and how fiduciaries can consider non-economic ESG factors. It issued guidance related to this question in each of the Clinton, Bush, Obama, and Trump administrations.

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