SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 30, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- OpenInvest, the first digital investment advisor for socially responsible investing, announced today that it launched, "Divest from Dark Money," the first one-click way to invest in companies that prioritize political transparency. The Divest from Dark Money screen allows investors to divest from companies that fail to publicly disclose whether corporate funds are supporting or opposing any political campaign, and proactively invest in companies committed to disclosing their political and lobbying spending. This new category is based on the findings of the CPA-Zicklin Index, an annual rating produced by the Center for Political Accountability (CPA) that benchmarks political disclosure and accountability policies and practices of leading U.S. public companies.
OpenInvest's platform delivers customized investment portfolios aligned with the most important issues we face. "Dark money" from undisclosed donors is pouring into elections across America, making up a significant portion of the $4 billion expected to be spent during this year's midterms. While we cannot know where dark money comes from, corporations spend millions each year to influence public policy. Unfortunately, the 2018 CPA-Zicklin Index found that only 11 percent of all S&P 500 companies fully disclose their corporate political spending, making the world of campaign finance even murkier. To combat this, OpenInvest launched "Divest from Dark Money" to enable investors to create customized, comprehensive portfolios of companies that provide transparent disclosure of political spending.
"Our core DNA is about bringing honesty and transparency to financial services," said Joshua Levin, co-founder and chief strategy officer, OpenInvest. "Companies spend millions of dollars to support candidates and shape policy, which typically is not disclosed to shareholders. OpenInvest is changing this by empowering U.S. shareholders to use their financial assets to encourage truth and public disclosure."
Through OpenInvest's cause-based investment screens, investors can customize their portfolios to align with their personal values. These may include: divestment from fossil fuel and carbon emission producers; investment in gender equality and LGBTQ companies; supporting refugees, and many others. The platform's proprietary algorithms automatically rebalance portfolios to keep them diversified, as investors and institutions divest/invest. This not only aligns an investor's portfolio with their values, but also encourages companies to make better financial disclosures.
"We're excited to work with OpenInvest to help encourage corporate accountability," said Bruce Freed, president, Center for Political Accountability. "Since its founding 15 years ago, CPA has made political transparency and accountability the norm. The Index, now in its eighth year, has found more companies committing to transparent political spending. OpenInvest is building on this change by allowing people to earn returns on their financial assets built on this very concept of transparency."
The Center for Political Accountability is a non-partisan, non-profit advocacy organization. The CPA-Zicklin Index uses 24 metrics to assess companies' policies and disclosure practices. The Index scores each company in the S&P 500 based on the information that is publicly available on the company's website.
About OpenInvest OpenInvest (https://openinvest.com) is a registered investment advisor with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and a financial technology startup dedicated to mainstreaming values-based investing through technology. The company was founded by two of the architects of Bridgewater Associates' portfolio management and trading systems and a sustainable finance expert from the World Wildlife Fund. OpenInvest is backed by some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley, including Andreessen Horowitz, YCombinator, and QED, the founders of CapitalOne. OpenInvest now has a team of financial, technology, and environmental, social and governance (ESG) experts across three continents and is recognized as a global thought leader in ESG implementation.OpenInvest's technology platform supports full customization around investor values, in-depth impact reporting, dynamic divest-invest activity, and easy shareholder engagement, while ensuring investors tightly track specified market indices. To get started, contact your advisor, visit openinvest.com, or download the iOS or Android app. Follow OpenInvest on Facebook and Twitter.