Many people unknowingly invest in companies whose products or practices conflict with their personal values. Values-based investing allows us to simply identify what you value most and align your investments to match.
Investing has become commoditized and distant, divorced from its true purpose -supplying capital to great businesses. Most investors try to profit from “the market” rather than from the productive and intrinsic value of the underlying companies. When you invest, you become a shareholder or owner. As an owner, it is essential to know how the companies you’re invested in make money. There are some companies that you’d be proud to own because they fill a need and bless humanity. On the other hand, there are companies you would never want to invest in because they make money from products or services that do not align with your deepest core values.
What is Necessary For a Good Investment?
The first requirement for a good investment is that the company should FILL A NEED in society or the marketplace. This creates demand for the company’s products and services andnallows the company to achieve a SUSTAINABLE PROFIT. As an investor, you are looking for a POSITIVE RETURN. You want to get your money back and earn a return on your investment. The final requirement is that when the company can identify and meet a need, it should BLESS MANKIND. Think about all of the ways that you interact with businesses every day- the technology company that made your alarm clock, the farmers who provided ingredients for your breakfast, and the engineers who designed and built the car you drove today. The institution of business has a unique ability to meet needs, create value, and positively impact the world.
If you’re like most people, your investments are probably in mutual funds or other pooled investment products where you might not know much about the companies benefitting from your investment. Mutual funds can sometimes feel like a mysterious black box. We put money in without knowing what’s inside, hoping that it kicks out a positive return.
OneAscent has technology that enables you to look at each of the individual investments in a mutual fund. Take the S&P 500 Index, for example. Each square represents one of the five hundred largest companies in America. The red squares show the companies that make money from products or services that cause harm rather than blessing humanity. In this example, 38 companies in the S&P 500 Index are involved in abortion, pornography, tobacco, or gambling.
We can help you clarify what matters most to you and analyze your investments and see if they align. Then, we can recommend practical next steps to help you align your values and your investments.
OneAscent’s unique onboarding process allows us to tailor a plan to your unique money style and values. Read more about how OneAscent begins client relationships with the end in mind.
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