Social Investing Research Firm Puts Out Two Faith-Based Indexes

January 15, 2008 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A Portland, Maine-based provider of environmental, social, and governance research and consulting has released two new indexes aimed at faith-based investors.

A news release from IW Financial said the IWF Catholic Values Index is comprised of companies that closely match the values defined in the Catholic Bishop’s Guidelines. The selection of the 150 companies that make up each index is based on IW Financial’s proprietary research and analytical technology.

The selection of index components excludes companies involved in pornography, contraception, military weapons, racial or gender discrimination, and abortion.

The announcement said the criteria used for the Conservative Christian Values Index include a company’s good global human rights profile and its commitment to maintaining a generally positive workplace, among others.  Companies were kept out based on their involvement in gambling, pornography, tobacco, alcohol, stem cell research, and abortion.

“Our indexes are designed to provide the basis for developing innovative investment strategies for the faith-based community,” said Craig Muska, Director at IW Financial, in the news release.  “Our indexes offer a unique market opportunity to asset management firms, product sponsors and advisors who want to address this large and growing segment.”

According to the announcement, the IW Financial indexes are calculated by Standard & Poor’s and are market capitalization weighted. 

Each is comprised of 10 sectors within the broad market, with the constituents selected to reflect the proportional contribution of that sector to the market as a whole.  Large-cap companies make up 50% of the indexes, while small and mid-cap companies comprise the remainder.

More information is at www.iwfinancial.com.

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