SAN JOSE, Calif., March 1, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Inspire Investing, a leading impact investment firm headquartered in the Silicon Valley, today announced the launch of two ETFs that support Christian ministry and invest in companies aligned with biblical values. The Inspire Global Hope Large Cap ETF (NYSE: BLES) and Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact ETF (NYSE: ISMD) began trading on the New York Stock Exchange on February 28. The funds provide investors the opportunity to create a purposeful impact with the convenience of a low cost, index-based ETF product. Causes supported by Inspire ETFs include clean water projects, human trafficking relief efforts, Bible distribution, and humanitarian relief for refugees in the Syrian crisis.
"At Inspire, we're dedicated to having a meaningful influence in the lives of people all over the world through investing in inspiring companies, engaging with firms to encourage alignment with positive business practices, and giving generously from our corporate profits," said Robert Netzly, President and CEO of Inspire Investing. "Good values and good returns are not mutually exclusive. Inspire ETFs allow you to join the growing movement of impact investors supporting worthy causes while maintaining the potential for above average investment returns."
Inspire ETFs are built around the revolutionary Inspire Impact Score methodology, which measures a company's positive effects on customers, communities, workplaces and the world. The Inspire Impact Score allows investors to identify and invest in some of the most inspiring companies in the world. Daily, artificial-intelligence (AI) technology filters millions of publicly available data points related to thousands of companies. Inspire selects the stocks of companies with the highest Inspire Impact Scores from across the globe and builds low cost, equally-weighted index portfolios with those inspiring companies, all of which meet Certified Biblically Responsible Investing (BRI) standards, an industry benchmark measuring a portfolio's alignment with biblical values. Inspire also gives socially-responsible investors a voice in the corporate board room by participating in shareholder activism to encourage positive business practices and leverage the unique influence that shareholders possess but often neglect.1
The Inspire Global Hope Large Cap ETF (NYSE: BLES) is based on the Inspire Global Hope Large Cap Equal Weight Index, which tracks the stock performance of 400 of the most inspiring large cap companies from around the globe. The index is comprised of 50% U.S. large cap companies, 40% international developed large cap companies and 10% emerging market large cap companies. Inspire defines "large cap" as a market capitalization of $10B or greater.
The Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact ETF is based on the Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact Equal Weight Index, which tracks the stock performance of 500 of the most inspiring small and mid-cap companies in the U.S., as determined by the Inspire Impact Score. The index is comprised of 50% U.S. mid cap companies with market caps between $2B-3.5B, and 50% U.S. small cap companies with market caps between $1B-2B. Inspire believes that companies in this "smid cap" capitalization range have the potential to deliver above average growth. Both Inspire indexes are equally weighted, rebalanced quarterly, and calculated on a gross total return basis in USD.
Inspire has also teamed up with Biola University, one of the nation's leading Christian universities, to produce academic level research and thought leadership with the Biola University Inspire Research Institute for Biblically Responsible Investing. The mission of the Institute is to support the wide spread adoption of biblically responsible investing as not only a vital part of Christian stewardship, but as a wise and potentially beneficial investment methodology for use by all investors, both Christian and non-Christian alike.
In a recent study, Biola University's Inspire Institute found that applying the Inspire Impact Score methodology of security selection had resulted in higher investment returns when compared to a non-screened benchmark. While the study did not state that higher Inspire Impact Scores always result in higher returns, it did validate the fact that it was possible to achieve above average investment returns with biblically screened, impact focused investments, which may come as a revelation to many in the investment world.
Netzly stated, "Biola University's recent study proves that it was possible to invest responsibly with biblical values and potentially earn above average returns. Evangelical Christians control approximately $13.7 trillion of the assets in the U.S. and our hope is that this data will encourage more of those assets to get involved in impact investing so we can all share a brighter future together."
For more information on Inspire Investing, please visit: www.inspireinvesting.com
For media inquiries or interview requests, contact: Inspire@ficommpartners.com
1 Inspire, the adviser, provides the index for the Inspire Funds to track. The indexes uses software that analyzes publicly available data relating to the primary business activities, products and services, philanthropy, legal activities, policies and practices when assigning Inspire Impact Scores to a company. The securities with the highest Inspire Impact Scores are included in the Indexes and are equally weighted. As the Fund may not fully replicate the Index, it is subject to the risk that investment management strategy may not produce the intended results.
The Inspire ETFs are new with a limited history of operations for investors to evaluate. There is no guarantee that the Funds will achieve their objective, generate positive returns, or avoid losses.
ETF shares are not redeemable with the issuing fund other than in large Creation Unit aggregations. Instead, investors must buy or sell ETF Shares in the secondary market with the assistance of a stockbroker. In doing so, the investor may incur brokerage commissions and may pay more than net asset value when buying and receive less than net asset value when selling. The Funds may focus their investments in securities of a particular industry to the extent the Index does. This may cause the Fund's net asset value to fluctuate more than that of a fund that does not focus in a particular industry.
The Funds are not actively managed and the Adviser will not sell shares of an equity security due to current or projected underperformance of a security, industry or sector, unless that security is removed from the Index or the selling of shares of that security is otherwise required upon a rebalancing of the Index as addressed in the Index methodology. Tracking error may occur because of imperfect correlation between the Fund's holdings of portfolio securities and those in the Index. The Fund's use of a representative sampling approach, if used, could result in its holding a smaller number of securities than are in the Index. To the extent the assets in the Funds are smaller, these risks will be greater.
Before investing, consider the funds' investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. To obtain a prospectus which contains this and other information, call 877.658.9473, or visit http://www.inspireetf.com. Read it carefully. The Inspire ETFs are distributed by Northern Lights Distributors, LLC, Member FINRA/SIPC.
Inspire and Northern Lights Distributors, LLC are not affiliated.
About Inspire Investing
Founded in 2015, and headquartered in the Silicon Valley of California, Inspire Investing seeks to create meaningful impact in the lives of people across the globe by providing low cost, high impact investments and is a leading authority in the Biblically Responsible Investing (BRI) movement. For more information, visit www.inspireinvesting.com.
* Disclaimer: Investment advisory services offered through CWM Advisors, LLC dba Inspire, a Registered Investment Advisor with the SEC.
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SOURCE Inspire Investing