It happened again last week… Cassie and I were meeting with a beloved client who recently lost her mother and had come in to start the process of transferring the estate assets. She invited us to share a meal with her afterwards and asked her aunt to meet us at the restaurant, as she wanted to introduce her to us and Biblically Responsible Investing. When we got into that discussion, the aunt sincerely exclaimed, “Oh no, my broker is a good Christian man and he would never invest in anything like that!” Her niece gently quizzed her, “Now, how do you KNOW that?” She reluctantly admitted that, in fact, she did not know. Her initial response is more often the case than not. The truth is that if your advisor is not talking with you about this important values issue, s(he) is probably not doing the due diligence to know what your funds are actually invested in. When we have opportunity to screen a portfolio for someone like the aunt, this becomes glaringly evident.
For example, after reading Cassie’s new book I Found Jesus in the Stock Market, a friend of ours recently inquired about her own 401(k) account that she had left with her former employer. We offered to screen her retirement portfolio which is comprised of a basket of Vanguard mutual funds. The results were as follows: 14% of underlying companies are involved in the abortion industry either directly (eg. by manufacturing abortifacient drugs) or through philanthropy channeled through Planned Parenthood. Another 4% is invested in companies involved in the pornography industry, and a large amount invested in companies that champion anti-family causes and still others that exploit addictions. Our unsuspecting friend had invested 42 cents of every retirement dollar in companies that oppose her faith values (Source: ENSOGO Analytics). Needless to say, she was appalled!
These screening results are typical and certainly not at all unique to Vanguard. The sad reality is that the vast majority of Christians, advisors included, have no idea what activities and business practices they are unwittingly supporting and profiting from through their investments. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way. There is a simple solution – Biblically Responsible Investing (BRI). This short whiteboard video explains very succinctly how BRI works and how you can achieve an excellent Moral Return on Investment. Take a look:
Isn’t it time you knew what you own? If you desire to become a biblically wise investor like Jane, please contact us to get started with a complimentary portfolio screening audit. You will be glad you did!
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