Headshot of Sonja Gibbs

Sonja Gibbs

Managing Director and Head of Sustainable Finance

Sonja’s research interests include multi-asset investment strategy, with a focus on emerging/frontier markets, capital flows and ESG investment.  She authors the IIF’s Weekly Insight, which offers a concise perspective on global financial markets in the context of topical economic and political developments, and oversees the quarterly Global Debt Monitor, which looks across mature and emerging economies for debt-related vulnerabilities such as the rapid buildup in EM corporate debt levels.  Sonja co-leads IIF policy work on sustainable finance and infrastructure investment, including advocacy and liaison efforts vis-à-vis the G20, the multilaterals and the international regulatory community.

Sonja has spent over 20 years in banking and financial markets, most recently with Nomura International in London, where she was Chief Equity Strategist. Previously she was Head of East European Economics and Senior European Bond Analyst, also for Nomura. Earlier positions included stints as a U.S. economist and bank credit analyst in New York and Los Angeles. She has taught undergraduate microeconomics at U.C. Berkeley, and spent several years with the Berkeley-Stanford Program on Soviet International Behavior.  Sonja’s work is widely cited in the financial press, including Bloomberg, the Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times; she is a regular speaker at industry conferences and has been a frequent commentator for financial television and radio in her strategist/analyst roles. 

Education

Ms. Gibbs is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), and received her M.B.A. and Bachelor’s degrees from the University of California at Berkeley.


Publications

Global Debt Monitor: Crisis Brewing
Voluntary Carbon Markets Update - Q3 2022
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Financing the Transition
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - November 2022
Weekly Insight: Better Investor Relations, Better Market Access
Frontier Market Debt Monitor: Sharp drop in issuance as global rates rise
Green Weekly Insight: ESG Takeaways from the D.C. Annual Meetings
Green Weekly Insight: ESG Loans - New Tool for Climate Finance
Green Weekly Insight: Sustainable Finance in Emerging Markets
Global Debt Monitor: Growing Risks for Emerging Markets
Weekly Insight: Double Threat - Food Insecurity and Debt Distress
ESG Flows and Markets - Q2 2022 Chartbook
Green Weekly Insight: ESG Scorecard for Frontier Markets
IIF Response to IAIS Consultation on AM Comparability
IIF Responds to EBA Discussion Paper on Environmental Risks
IIF Letter on the FATF Beneficial Ownership Reform Consultation
IIF Provides Comment Letter to ISSB Exposure Drafts IFRS S1 and IFRS S2
Climate and Capital: Views from the Institute of International Finance
Economic Views: Frontier Market External Funding Needs
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - July 2022
Sustainable Debt Monitor - Sustainable Debt Universe Tops Record $4 trillion
Current Account with Clay Lowery - Episode 17: Emerging Market Vulnerabilities with Sergi Lanau, IIF's Deputy Chief Economist
Voluntary Carbon Markets Update - Q2 2022
Green Weekly Insight: Signs of Recovery in ESG Markets
Joint Trades Response to FSB Consultation on Climate Risk Report
Green Weekly Insight: Carbon Footprinting for Emerging Markets
Green Weekly Insight: Are Rising Energy Prices Affecting EV Sales?
IIF Responds to SEC Climate Disclosure Proposed Rule
Green Weekly Insight: Tackling Nature-related risks
Weekly Insight: Triple Threat: Debt, Climate, and Inequality
Green Weekly Insight: Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets
Weekly Insight: Climate collaboration in a polarized world
Weekly Insight: Rising rates, stronger USD spell trouble for EMs
Global Debt Monitor: Debt in the Time of Geopolitics
Green Weekly Insight: A New ESG Scorecard for Emerging Markets
Weekly Insight: Growing risks in corporate debt markets
IIF Weekly Insight: Prevention and Resolution of Sovereign Debt Crises – the Importance of Market-based Approaches
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor – April 2022
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Market Turmoil Weighs on ESG Debt Markets
ESG Flows and Markets - Q1 2022 Chartbook
AATG Podcast - Getting to Net Zero: the Vital Role of Transition Finance with Zoe Knight of HSBC
Green Weekly Insight: Tough Q1 for ESG markets, better times ahead
Voluntary Carbon Markets Update - Q1 2022
Frontier Market Debt Monitor: Juggling act—debt, inflation, and growth
Green Weekly Insight: Blended finance for climate—the time is now
AATG Podcast - The Essential Role of Banks in Getting to Net Zero
Green Weekly Insight: ESG-linked sukuk market - promising but still niche
IIF Responds to ESMA Call for Evidence on Market Characteristics for ESG Ratings Providers in the EU
Weekly Insight: EM Vulnerabilities: Gauging Russia/Ukraine Impact
AATG Podcast - Pathways to Transition: The Vital Role of Climate and ESG Markets
Green Weekly Insight: Scaling up sustainable finance for SMEs
IIF Briefing Note on IPCC AR6 WGII Report
Weekly Insight: Eyes on EM Debt as Russia-Ukraine Heats Up
Global Debt Monitor: EM Debt: The Good, the Green and the Ugly
Integrity through Alignment: A 2022 Roadmap for Global Standards and Market-led Approaches in Sustainable Finance
IIF responds to OCC Consultation on Principles for Climate-Related Financial Risk Management for Large Banks
IIF responds to BCBS Consultation on Principles for the Effective Management and Supervision of Climate-related Financial Risks
Weekly Insight: Grappling with a mountain of EM government debt
Green Weekly Insight: Who's afraid of greenflation?
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor – January 2022
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Boom time!
IIF Shares Its Regulatory Priorities With FSB Chairman Klaas Knot
Green Weekly Insight: ESG in EM Sovereign Debt and Credit Ratings
Bonds that Build Back Better: The Pivotal Role of Fixed Income Markets in the ESG Revolution
Green Weekly Insight: Blockbuster Year for ESG Investing
Green Weekly Insight: Putting the ESG into EM Eurobonds
Green Weekly Insight: Carbon capture, utilization, and storage
Green Weekly Insight: Debt-for-Nature Swaps–Tackling the Triple Threat
Green Weekly Insight: Can hydrogen drive decarbonization?
Green Weekly Insight: Navigating to Net-Zero: Greenflation Risk
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor – November 2021
IIF COP26 Outcomes and Implications
Green Weekly Insight: Net zero - with or without nuclear?
Global Debt Monitor: Confronting Climate Change and Policy Normalization
IIF Response to FIO Request for Information on Climate-Related Financial Risks
Green Weekly Insight: The EU Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism
Weekly Insight: COP Views - Developing Countries Need Market Access
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - October 2021
Sustainable Debt Monitor: COP26 Puts an ESG Lens on EM Investing
Getting to Net-Zero: The Vital Role of Global Carbon Markets
Green Weekly Insight: Notes from DC: ESG themes from our AMM
Frontier Market Debt Monitor: Debt hits new highs, but borrowing subsides
Green Weekly Insight: Sharp slowdown in ESG flows
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - September 2021
Green Weekly Insight: Greening the Agriculture Sector—Part 2
Green Weekly Insight: Greening the Agriculture Sector—Part 1
Global Debt Monitor: Reassessing the Pandemic Impact
IIF response to IOSCO Consultation on ESG Ratings and Data Products Providers
Weekly Insight: A Closer Look at Public Sector Debt Transparency Initiatives
IIF Briefing Note on IPCC AR6 WG1 Report on Climate Change: Impacts and Implications
IIF responds to IFRS Foundation Exposure Draft on Proposed Targeted Amendments to the IFRS Foundation Constitution
Green Weekly Insight: ESG Funds—More Please!
IIF SFWG Response to TCFD Consultation on Climate-related Metrics 
Green Weekly Insight: Mapping the Sustainable Investment Universe
Navigating Climate Headwinds: Reference Approaches for Scenario-based Climate Risk Measurement by Banks and Supervisors
Sustainable Debt Monitor: A Record-Breaking Year
Green Weekly Insight: The Next Big Thing - Sustainability-linked Bonds
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - July 2021 
Green Weekly Insight: Returns, Volatility and Liquidity in ESG Bond Markets
Green Weekly Insight: Tackling the Infrastructure Jigsaw
Weekly Insight: Better Dialogue, Better Investor Relations
IIF Responds to SEC Consultation on Climate Change Disclosures
Weekly Insight: Updating the Principles for Stable Capital Flows and Fair Debt Restructuring
Weekly Insight: The Need for Better Debt Transparency
IIF responds to EBA Consultation on Draft Implementing Standards on Prudential Disclosures on ESG Risks
Green Weekly Insight: Mind the green R&D gap!
Global Debt Monitor: Chipping Away at the Mountain?
Green Weekly Insight: Greening Real Estate Markets
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - April 2021
Green Weekly Insight: Navigating Net Zero
Weekly Insight: A fresh look at EM sovereign debt risks
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Race to Net Zero Drives ESG Debt Flows
Green Weekly Insight: ESG and Emerging Markets
Green Weekly Insight: S in the Spotlight
Frontier Market Debt Monitor: Double-edged sword
Green Weekly Insight: ESG in Bond Markets
Green Weekly Insight: The Social Cost of Carbon
Green Weekly Insight: Beyond Climate Change
Weekly Insight: Beyond the DSSI
Green Weekly Insight: Carbon Efficiency 101 – Emerging Markets
Global Debt Monitor: COVID Drives Debt Surge - Stabilization Ahead?
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - February 2021
Green Weekly Insight: Carbon Efficiency 101
Weekly Insight: Chinese Debt—Still On The Rise
IIF Comment Letter on EBA Discussion Paper on Management and Supervision of ESG Risks
IIF SFWG Response to TCFD Consultation on Forward-Looking Metrics
Green Weekly Insight: ESG Disclosure — From Chaos, Order?
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Up, up and away
Prudential Pathways: Industry Perspectives on Supervisory and Regulatory Approaches to Climate-Related and Environmental Risks
Weekly Insight: Heyday for EM Corporate Eurobonds
Weekly Insight: Debt Clouds Over the Post-COVID Recovery
IIF Responds to IFRS Consultation Paper on Sustainability Reporting
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - December 2020
Weekly Insight: Surge in Flows to ESG Equities
Green Weekly Insight: Mind the (gender pay) gap
Weekly Insight: A Closer Look at Debt Buildup in Mature Markets
Weekly Insight: More debt, more trouble
Global Debt Monitor: Attack of the Debt Tsunami
Green Weekly Insight: Economic Impacts of Climate Change
Weekly Insight: Investor relations key for EM borrowers
Green Weekly Insight: A Path Towards Inclusive Wealth
Weekly Insight: Gross Financing Needs in DSSI-eligible Countries
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - October 2020
Financing a Sustainable Future for Emerging Markets
Green Weekly Insight: China's Energy Transition - Enter the Dragon
Frontier Market Debt Monitor: Surge in Government Borrowing
Weekly Insight: Zombies Inc.
IIF/UNEP-FI TCFD Report Playbook
Green Weekly Insight: U.S. Energy Transition—Will a Green Giant Awake?
Green Weekly Insight: Decade in Jeopardy
Green Weekly Insight: Tech Selloff Dents ESG Stocks
ESG Webinar Series: How to Assess Climate and Nature Sovereign Risk
Green Weekly Insight: Carbon Markets: Can't Trade What You Can't Price
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Sustainable Debt Universe Tops $1.5 Trillion 
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor - August 2020
Green Weekly Insight: Charting Course: Mapping Transition Risk Tools
ESG Webinar Series: Long-Term Climate Strategies for Inclusive Growth and a Sustainable Recovery
Weekly Insight: Update on G20 Debt Service Suspension
Green Weekly Insight: Voluntary Carbon Offsets—A Primer
Global Debt Monitor: Sharp Spike In Global Debt Ratios
IIF Response to EC Consultation on a Renewed Sustainable Finance Strategy
Green Weekly Insight: Charting Course: Mapping ESG Data Providers
Green Weekly Insight: Will COVID-19 reinvigorate the ESG agenda?
Green Weekly Insight: ESG Funds Deliver!
IIF Response to EU Review of the Non-Financial Reporting Directive
Weekly Insight: Debt Burdens Weigh On Recovery Prospects
Building a Global ESG Disclosure Framework: A Path Forward
IIF Sustainable Finance Monitor For June 2020 
Green Weekly Insight: Financing a Sustainable Recovery
Weekly Insight: Corporate Debt in the Crosshairs
Weekly Insight: Surging Global Debt -- What's Owed to China?
Sustainable Debt Monitor: Social Bonds to the Rescue 
Weekly Insight: G20 DSSI: What’s Owed to Private Creditors?
Weekly Insight: COVID-19 Heat Map for the Poorest Countries
Weekly Insight: G20 Calls Time Out On Debt Service
Green Weekly Insight: ESG in the Time of COVID-19
IIF ESG Webinar With 2° Investing Initiative: New Stress Test Scenarios For COVID-19
April 2020 Global Debt Monitor: COVID-19 Lights a Fuse
Weekly Insight: COVID-19 hammers equity valuations
AATG Episode 6: Janine Guillot, CEO, Sustainability Accounting Standards Board Foundation (SASB)
Weekly Insight: COVID-19 exacerbates household debt burdens
Weekly Insight: COVID-19 Drives Dash for Cash
IIF Response to BoE Discussion Paper on 2021 Biennial Exploratory Scenario on Climate-Related Risks
Weekly Insight: COVID-19 Infects Corporate Debt Markets
Green Weekly Insight: Is Your Business Strategy "Climate Resilient"?
Sustainable Finance Policy & Regulation: The Case for Greater International Alignment
Sustainable Finance In Focus: New Approaches to Private Sector Funding for Sustainable Development
Green Weekly Insight: The Race for Better ESG Disclosure
Green Weekly Insight: What if? A closer look at climate scenarios
Frontier Market Debt Monitor: Rising Debt And Climate Risk
Sustainable Finance In Focus: Back to Basics - The Pyramid
Green Weekly Insight: Mind the climate finance gap!
Green Weekly Insight: The Davos after-party
IIF/EBF Global Climate Finance Survey: A Look At How Financial Firms Are Approaching Climate Risk Analysis, Measurement, And Disclosure
Green Weekly Insight: Roaring Twenties
Weekly Insight: Too frothy?
January 2020 Global Debt Monitor: Sustainability Matters
Weekly Insight: Liquidity trumps geopolitics
Green Weekly Insight: Carrots and Sticks: the EU's Green New Deal
IIF SFWG Letter to the NGFS re: Climate Risk Analysis and Measurement 
Green Weekly Insight: Materiality matters
Green Weekly Insight: Climate Science is the New Rocket Science
Weekly Insight: Looking for a fix
Weekly Insight: Game of Loans
Global Debt Monitor - November 2019
Weekly Insight: Climate super year ahead?
Weekly Insight: Risk on—for now
Frontier Markets Debt Monitor: Growing Vulnerabilities
Weekly Insight: Notes from Washington
Weekly Insight: Let's make a deal (please)
AATG Episode 3: Deborah Lehr, Vice Chairman and Executive Director of The Paulson Institute
Weekly Insight: Making progress
Weekly Insight: Going for Green
Weekly Insight: Keep calm and repo on
Letter on EU Sustainable Finance Taxonomy to the EC TEG
Weekly Insight: A Farewell Bazooka
Sustainable Finance in Focus: Green Is The New Gold
Weekly Insight: Back-to-school risk-on
Climate-related Financial Disclosures: Examples of Leading Practices in TCFD Reporting by Financial Firms
Weekly Insight: Carousel of worries
Weekly Insight: Sustainability in focus
Weekly Insight: More than a trade war
Letter Responding to First Comprehensive Report from NGFS
IIF Quarterly Global Debt Monitor 2019 - Slide Deck
Weekly Insight: Upping the ante
Weekly Insight: More talk—more action?
Weekly Insight: In the valley of debt
Global Debt Monitor - July 2019
Weekly Insight: Conditional optimism
All About the Green, Episode 2: Marisa Buchanan, Executive Director of Sustainable Finance at JPMorgan Chase
Weekly Insight: Hedging G20 bets
Weekly Insight: Big green light
Weekly Insight: Trade wars bad, lower rates good
Sustainable Finance in Focus: Climate change: a core financial stability risk
Weekly Insight: Wall of worry
Weekly Insight: Trouble brewing
Weekly Insight: Vertigo
Weekly Insight: Speed Bumps
Request For Feedback: Draft Voluntary Principles For Debt Transparency
Weekly Insight: May flowers
Sustainable Finance in Focus: Green Loans—Kickoff Time!
Frontier Markets Debt Monitor: Too much, too fast?
Weekly Insight: Winds of Change
Weekly Insight: Elephant in the room
Asset and Investment Management Survey – H1 2019
Sustainable Finance in Focus: Greening Infrastructure in Emerging Markets
All About the Green: Episode 1, A Conversation with IFC's Neil Gregory on Impact Investment
White Paper: How China Failed to Fail
Sustainable Finance in Focus: Green Bonds Take Root
IOSCO Consultation: Sustainable Fin. in EM - Role of Securities Regulators
Global Debt Monitor Insights: Growing Risks for Low-income Countries
Weekly Insight: Let a thousand debates bloom
Global Debt Monitor - April 2019
Weekly Insight: Sense and Sustainability
Letter on Sustainable Finance Taxonomy Principles to the EC TEG
Weekly Insight: The Good Place
Weekly Insight: No Mo' FOMO?
Weekly Insight: Running low
IIF Weekly Insight: Hold or Fold?
Weekly Insight: Steamless rally
Weekly Insight: Looking for a Sweeter Deal
Weekly Insight: In search of mojo
PRA Consultation - Managing the Financial Risks from Climate Change
Weekly Insight: Patience Please
Weekly Insight: Views from the Mountain
Asset and Investment Management Survey – H2 2018
Weekly Insight: Cracks in the System
Global Debt Monitor - January 2019
Weekly Insight: A Really Big Game of Chess
Global Debt Monitor Insights: Growing Risks in the U.S. Corporate Sector
Weekly Insight: Bumpier Road
Letter To NGFS On The IIF Sustainable Finance Working Group
Weekly Insight: Be Prepared
Weekly Insight: Centrifuge
Weekly Insight: Wake me up when it's over
Weekly Insight: White Noise