Praxis introduces 'Values + ESG Screening'

Praxis news |

Comprehensive values screens now complemented by data-driven ESG criteria to support proactive impact investors

Praxis Mutual Funds® announces the expansion of its comprehensive values-based investment screens with a set of new, risk-based environmental, social and governance screens. The nearly three-year process has combined the positive social tilt of values screens with integrated ESG factors. Using ESG data from longtime research partner and global provider of investment data, MSCI ESG Research, all Praxis portfolios will benefit from a consistent screening policy designed for investors concerned about the impact of their investments.

“As a longtime values-based investor, Praxis has recognized the impact that corporate environmental, social and governance concerns have on the bottom line,” said Mark Regier, Praxis Vice President of Stewardship Investing. “Our new Values + ESG Screening process benefits investors by avoiding harmful sectors or practices while proactively integrating a growing pool of ESG data relevant to financial performance.”

In 2014, Praxis implemented an environmental screen utilizing MSCI data targeting carbon emissions and climate risk management. The updated environmental screen excluded several dozen companies with high climate risks and poor carbon management, in addition to the companies excluded by the values screen.

“This process resulted in a significant reduction of the carbon footprint of various Praxis portfolios,” said Chris Meyer, Praxis Manager of Stewardship Investing Advocacy and Research. “And this is something we plan to monitor going forward.”

Building on the success of the environmental screen, Praxis added social and governance screens built on similar data from MSCI ESG. The screens are designed to eliminate companies with a history of human rights or corruption problems, as well as companies with poor management systems that may lead to future concerns.

“Together with shareholder advocacy, proxy voting, and positive impact and community investing, these screens help us manage the Funds’ social and environmental impact – something investors are increasingly seeking from their investments,” said Regier.

The past several years have seen explosive growth of investor interest in using ESG data to understand future risks and opportunities. According to Bloomberg, an industry-recognized leader of financial data, investors are noticing the key role ESG data plays in identifying which companies would make a good long-term, sustainable investment.

“As ESG data has advanced, more companies are disclosing this kind of information to stay competitive with their peers,” said Chad Horning, President of Praxis Mutual Funds and Everence® Chief Investment Officer. “The new ESG screens complement our long-standing values screens by integrating data into the management process across the Praxis Fund family.”

About Praxis Mutual Funds and Everence

Praxis Mutual Funds, advised by Everence Capital Management, is a leading faith-based, socially responsible family of mutual funds designed to help people and groups integrate their finances with values. To learn more, visit praxismutualfunds.com.

Everence helps individuals, organizations and congregations integrate finances with faith through a national team of advisors and representatives. Everence offers banking, insurance and financials services with community benefits and stewardship education. To learn more, visit everence.com or call (800) 348-7468.

Disclosure

The Fund’s stewardship investing strategy could cause the fund to sell or avoid securities that may subsequently perform well, and the application of social screens may cause the fund to lag the performance of its index.