Change Finance launches impact investing ETF

Oct 12th, 2017 | By | Category: Equities

SRI-focused asset manager Change Finance has announced the launch of its first ETF – the Change Finance Diversified Impact US Large Cap Fossil Fuel Free ETF (NYSE Arca: CHGX). The ETF tracks an index that uses the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to guide its stock selection.

Change Finance launches impact investing ETF

The index uses the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to guide the methodology and screen out firms that are ‘bad actors’.

Donna Morton, CEO of Change Finance, commented: “Our investors want alignment with what they care about, without sacrificing performance. Fossil fuel-free is essential, but CHGX then goes further, divesting not only from companies who dig up, refine, burn and service fossil fuels, but also from companies that are serious polluters, that have significant human or labour rights violations, and that fail to meet a variety of other social and environmental standards. No other ETF does this.”

The ETF tracks the Change Finance Diversified Impact US Large Cap Fossil Fuel Free Index. The parent universe of the index is the 1,000 largest companies listed in the US. The index methodology then applies a series of ESG screens to exclude companies that are deemed to be “bad actors,” whether they operate in the oil, gas, coal, or tobacco industries among others, or have engaged in any sort of business malpractice.

Andrew Rodriguez, president of Change Finance, said: “We reject companies that produce pesticides or military weapons, engage in corrupt business practices, or have exploitative relationships with labour and indigenous people. We move money from harm to healing – harnessing our collective experience in social change.

“The result is an ETF that invests in companies built for the 21st century. This sort of smart investing can solve some of the worst social and environmental issues, and we believe it could serve as a core holding in any investor’s portfolio. Think of us inspired by the values of ‘Occupy’, but powered by the acumen of Wall Street.”

Hunter Lovins, executive vice president of impact at Change Finance, added: “After applying these screens, what you’re left with are good global corporate citizens – large-cap US-based companies representing a range of sectors. We believe these are some of the best companies with long-term business models. They are conscientious regarding their impact on employees, supply chain, people, and planet. They do what they can to reduce their carbon footprint, implement inclusive employment practices, harness the wisdom of women, and seek to do good in the communities where they do business. They are what I want to own.”

The fund has an expense ratio of 0.75%.

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