Looking for socially responsible stocks?

Created date

February 16th, 2017
Stock image of a businessman holding a heart-shaped symbol.

Stock image of a businessman holding a heart-shaped symbol.

Increasingly, investors have decided they want to put their money into companies that are aligned with their values. But figuring out which socially responsible stocks to invest in can be tricky. Fortunately, there are quite a few mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that cater to so-called impact investors by screening companies and bundling socially responsible stocks into funds by theme. Here are eight funds you may want to invest in. 

1. Domini Impact Equity Fund (Ticker: DSEFX). This fund looks for large cap U.S. stocks that meet certain social and environmental standards. Companies are evaluated based on the businesses they operate in as well as their relationships with key stakeholders, including communities, customers, ecosystems, employees, investors, and suppliers. Apple and Verizon are among the largest holdings. (domini.com)

2. Parnassus Endeavor Fund (Ticker: PARWX). There are just 30 carefully selected stocks in this fund, including Gilead Sciences and American Express. To be included in the Endeavor Fund, companies must offer outstanding workplaces and cannot be engaged in any aspect of the fossil fuels industry. (www.parnassus.com)

3. Pax Global Environmental Markets Fund (Ticker: PGRNX). This fund invests in companies that offer technologies and services that drive resource optimization in energy, water, waste, and sustainable food and agriculture. At least 40% of holdings are typically in companies outside of the U.S., including East Japan Railway and French utility company SUEZ Environment. (paxworld.com)

4. New Covenant Balance Growth Fund (Ticker: NCBGX). New Covenant invests according to the social-witness principles approved by General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, including the pursuit of peace; racial, social, and economic justice; environmental responsibility; and securing women’s rights. (newcovenantfunds.com)

5. Gender Diversity Index ETF (Ticker: SHE). This ETF invests in the idea of putting more women into the corner office. Companies are evaluated based on the gender diversity in their senior leadership positions. And the fund gives a portion of its revenue to charitable organizations that work to empower women. (ssga.com)

6. Workplace Equality ETF (Ticker: EQLT). If you want to know your investments are supporting companies that treat LGBT employees fairly, consider the Workplace Equality ETF. Companies in this fund offer health benefits to same-sex spouses of employees and include mandatory language in their equal employment opportunity statements prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Marriott and Bank of America are two of the top holdings. (eqltfund.com)

7. The Organics ETF (Ticker: ORG). This ETF tracks the Solactive Organics Index, which includes companies like Whole Foods Market and L’Occitane International that sell or produce “naturally derived food and personal care items.” (janus.com/advisor/exchange-traded-funds)

8. Barclays Return on Disability ETN (Ticker: RODI). There are 1.3 billion people globally who face challenges related to cognition, dexterity, or sensory abilities, according to Barclays, and some companies are working to make life a little easier for people with disabilities. This ETF invests in those businesses that hire people with disabilities and implement productivity-focused improvements driven by people with disabilities. (etnplus.com)