FARMINGTON, Conn., Oct. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Planning Across The Spectrum, in collaboration with Tenpath Financial Group, announces the launch of the Neurodiversity Index (AU 79 Index), an equally weighted index measuring the performance of the top 79 US-listed companies that have made a commitment to neurodiversity hiring, leadership, and product development.
"To our knowledge none of the billions of dollars currently being invested on the world's markets focus on neurodiverse inclusion, and we've been frustrated to be left out of the conversation," said Andrew Komarow, founder of Planning Across The Spectrum.
"The Neurodiversity Index assumes the same principles as many in the impact investing space: if conditions are right for inclusion of neurodiverse workers and consumers, a business will thrive. However, no one in the financial world has created the structure to test (and prove) that principle, so we have."
Index methodology The Neurodiversity Index measures the performance of the top 79 U.S. listed companies that are leaders and advocates of the neurodiversity movement to support individuals with autism and other cognitive or neurological conditions. All the companies are ranked by proprietary formulas and the research developed by a majority autistic team. The index is reconstituted and adjusted semi-annually.
The 79 companies included in the Neurodiversity Index have all demonstrated:
The advancement of Neurodivergent Leadership within their company—Where neurodivergent leaders have created or risen to top positions in successful US corporations.
Commitment to neurodivergent beliefs and the demonstration of sound financial data—Many of these companies have put money, time, and resources into building official programs to hire and retain neurodivergent workers.
Accountability throughout working practices and structures— Speculative or manipulative companies or companies with poor business practices will be excluded.
The development and promotion of neurodivergent products—The index companies focus on making tools and products specifically for neurodivergent users.
Ownership of the process—Neurodivergent coaches and consultants are involved in their company structure planning.
Commitment to diversity—Programs have been developed to support diverse workers within the company.
Blanket initiatives and sharing support of the neurodiversity movement—The index companies raise awareness by sharing support of the neurodiversity movement.
Liability reduction and ethical practices including standard ethical treatment of workers—Standard ethical treatment of workers is the baseline for inclusion in the Neurodiversity Index.
The Neurodiversity (AU 79) Index is a new tool for investors keen to be involved in impact investing, said Komarow. "Right now, the Neurodiversity Index is a tracking tool of companies that have made a commitment in neurodiversity hiring, retention, leadership, and product development. Going forward, our principles will allow consumers to invest with us to put their money behind their belief that we can do better for neurodiverse workers, and that by doing better for them, businesses thrive."
Liz Yoder, the Director of Research, shared, "We are prepared to dig into the actual business practices of the companies that we continuously hear about hiring neurodiverse workers and to hold them to a higher standard. We know some great companies do not get all the press of the Microsofts and the SAPs of the world."
Recently added holdings include: Alphabet, Inc. Baker Hughes CO. Bank of New York Mellon Corp Dell Technologies, Inc. Salesforce.com, Inc. Tesla, Inc Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc.
Why 79? "Because 79 is the number for gold on the periodic table and the symbol for gold is AU(tism)."