Socially responsible mutual fund group, the Ave Maria Mutual Funds announced it has launched two new funds. The company, which invests according to Roman Catholic beliefs, said it is now offering a bond fund and a growth-oriented stock portfolio. These will join the Ave Maria Catholic Values Fund, an equities fund that has assets of around $100 million and launched nearly two years ago.
The fund invests in companies whose practices, products, or operations do not violate the main teachings of the religion. The fund steers clear of any company that sells birth control products or financially supports Planned Parenthood Federation of America. It also avoids distributors of pornography, among other criteria.
There are a number of socially conscious, and many of them avoid investing in companies that produce goods that are deemed detrimental to society such as tobacco and alcohol companies. Still others avoid investing in companies that make war machinery. These criteria are not part of the screening process for these funds since the advisory board to the fund determined the church doesnt have an official stance on those items, according to an official at firm that distributes the fund a report last week said.