Why screen for Christian Values - Christian Values Investing

The Bible says,

The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. – Psalms 24:1
Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. – I Corinthians 10:31
Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. – 1 Corinthians 4:2
And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? – Luke 12:42                            

People oppose gambling, but own casinos in their mutual funds. People detest abortion, but own abortion providers in their retirement plan. People reject pornography, but own adult entertainers in their index funds / ETFs. People abhor homosexuality, but through their investments support companies that promote alternative lifestyles. 

  • Investors may think that values information is subjective
  • Researchers may think that values information is inaccessible
  • Portfolio managers may think that values screening hurts performance
  • Investment firms may think that demand for values-based investments is small
  • Many may think that there is no choice, but to accept some values violations as part of life

The Bible says,

He that is faithful in that which is least, is faithful also in much; and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much. – Luke 16:10
Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. – Matthew 6:33

It seems that consciences have been dulled. Some people seem to view values investing as Pandora’s Box, which they would rather not open. They avoid facing the reality of knowing that their investments support things they detest. Perhaps they think they must go along in order to earn a good return.

Yet, the reality is clear — investors support the companies they own. This is true whether the company is private or public and whether the stock is owned directly or through a mutual fund or ETF. Thus, many investors support activities and lifestyles that they abhor.

The core answer to the question, Why screen for values? is to keep a clear conscience before God and man. (Acts 24:16) The number of BRI options is growing. Better BRI choices lessen the rationale for owning portfolios with companies that are not aligned with the biblical values of the investor.

Another reason some investors support BRI is the possibility that the collective votes of many biblically responsible investors could positively impact corporate management decisions.