NYT: Christian-Friendly Investments ‘At Odds’ with Corporate America

“Biblically responsible” investment opportunities are antithetical to corporate America, according to The New York Times.

Times columnist Liz Moyer accused Inspire Investing’s new Christian friendly E.T.F.s (exchange traded funds) of being “squarely at odds with that of nearly all of corporate America” Feb. 28, yet just months earlier the paper praised E.T.F.’s designed around climate change alarmism.  

Moyer was quick to cite the regulatory filing of the new E.T.F.s, launched Feb. 28, that vaguely stated that the E.T.F.s would avoid investing in companies that have “any degree of participation in activities that do not align with biblical values” including “the LGBT lifestyle.”

She claimed this did not align with corporate America because 92 percent of Fortune 500 companies have “nondiscrimination policies” pertaining to sexual orientation and 82 percent have policies pertaining to “gender identity.”

However, later in the article she admitted that Inspire Investing’s CEO Robert Netzly says “he has no problems with companies providing benefits to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees and having nondiscrimination policies.”

“As Christians, we love our neighbors in the L.G.B.T. community and encourage companies to provide equal employee benefits for all,” Netzly told the Times. “A company deciding to spend money and time to pursue a hard-line activist agenda that has nothing to do with their core business is a different issue, and is a waste of investor dollars.”

Moyer cited a previous E.T.F. “tracking Baptist, Catholic, Lutheran, Methodist” and Christian values that folded in two years, but then boasted that some E.T.F.s built around companies that have “good labor policies or sustainable and renewable products” are thriving.

She painted Inspire’s Christian friendly E.T.F.s as unlikely to succeed by citing Morningstar director of E.T.F. research Ben Johnson who said most morally driven E.T.F.s “are flops.”

Just 3 months ago, the Times’s Moises Velasquez-Manoff expressed optimism for a different kind of morally driven E.T.F.

After claiming that “human-caused climate change will start eroding economic output,” Velasquez-Manoff made the case for why climate change friendly E.T.F.s would be moral and profitable. He argued that people who cared about climate change could “divest from the fossil fuel companies entirely.”

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