According to some surveys, church attendance is down. We could argue until we’re blue in the face about what that means to the larger idea of religion’s place in society but, for today, Solomon Success would like to spend some time discussing Christian investment funds, which seem to be multiplying in number and popularity. There are three, in particular, worthy of attention.
1. Ave Maria Catholic Values Fund â€“ According to fund president, George Schwartz, the word â€œvaluesâ€ in the title is a double-edged meaning. Not only are the investments they choose done so on market-based reasoning, but each must also past a screening that insures the company being considered for inclusion in the fund doesn’t disregard any of the Ave Maria Catholic Values Fund ideals. Specifically, there must be no involvement in abortion or pornography, no ties with Planned Parenthood, and cannot be involved with offering nonmarital partner benefits. Even though that eliminates about 400 companies listed on the Russell 3000 index, the Ave Maria Catholic Values fund stays well diversified and manages assets worth about $250 million, up from $144 million as recently as 2003.
2. New Covenant Growth Fund â€“ This fund is operated by and for members of the Presbyterian Church. As such, the fund stakes out a strong position against alcohol, gambling, and firearms sales. The New Covenant Growth Fund has outperformed the S&P Index the past three years, requires only a minimum investment of $500, is a no load fund with an expense ratio of 1.13% expenses, and enjoys a 4 Star rating from Standard & Poor’s. Loaded toward the financial and energy sectors, this Christian investment fund proves that, even when you screen out almost 500 companies for moral reasons, you still earn a nice rate of return.
3. Timothy Fund Large/Mid-Cap Values Fund â€“ The Timothy family of mutual funds was one of the early adopters of investing based on biblical principles. Created in 1999, this Large/Mid-Cap value fund now has about $50 million under management. Like all Timothy funds, this one is very strict and has zero tolerance for any company associated with homosexuality or other alternative lifestyle, alcohol, pornography, Planned Parenthood, abortion, gambling, and tobacco.
For a Christian investor looking for a mutual fund that adheres to Biblical principles, consider one of the three Christian investment funds listed here. Depending upon your particular brand of religion, one may fit your needs better than another. The broader point is that you don’t have to blend your money with companies you disagree with in order to earn an honest profit.
The Solomon Success Team
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