So-called ESG—environmental, social and governance—funds are popular with progressives who hope to use their dollars to influence companies as well as with others who see growth potential from companies focused on industries such as renewable energy.
Two ETFs run by 2ndVote Advisers LLC near Nashville have grown in the past month from about $6 million to roughly $25 million, representatives say. Money managers at the firm say they hope they will surpass $100 million by the end of the year after adding more portfolio choices and courting pension funds in conservative-leaning states.
“It’s an investment option for unwoke investors,” said Andy Puzder, who is on the firm’s advisory board. “We believe that companies that focus on profit make more than companies that don’t.”
2ndVote Advisers started offering two ETFs after last year’s presidential election. One fund caters to investors who feel strongly about opposing abortion, while the other is targeted at supporters of gun rights.
The funds use a “social scoring system” that looks at a variety of company information, including direct and indirect donations, activities and stated policies, sponsorship of political and advocacy-related events, donations by corporate leaders, and lobbying efforts for or against various issues on the state and federal level.
The ETFs invest in companies they view as neutral or conservative on abortion or gun rights, and not necessarily because they deal directly with those issues. A company may be included in one of the funds, even if it isn’t viewed as neutral or conservative on all issues.
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