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David Zanoni is the owner of startbuildingit.com. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a B.S. in Management. He is an independent long term investor of quality stocks and uses options for strategy. David believes in the power of innovation, capitalism, and the characteristics of the... More
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  • Ave Maria Funds – Catholic Funds that Beat the S&P Benchmarks 0 comments
    Sep 18, 2011 3:22 PM

    Investors with strong moral standards have conflicts investing in companies that are not consistent with their beliefs.  For example, a catholic investor who believes in pro-life would not want to invest in a company that is involved in making an abortion pill.  To avoid conflicts like this, mutual funds have been created to make stock selection consistent with certain moral beliefs.  One such grouping of funds is known as the Ave Maria Funds.

    The Ave Maria Funds have a pro-life and pro-family approach to investing.  They have a moral screening process that ensures that stocks are selected in compliance with Catholic teaching regarding abortion, pornography, and policies that undermine the sacrament of marriage.  This is done with a Catholic Advisory Board who ensures that investments are made in companies that do not violate the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.   

    The Ave Maria Funds are no-load funds which are built on the philosophy that investors shouldn’t have to sacrifice financial performance for their pro-life and pro-family beliefs.  This philosophy has been made true because the stock funds have beaten the performance of their S&P benchmarks over time since their inception.  

    World Equity Fund (AVEWX)

    The Ave Maria World Equity Fund invests at least 60% of its assets in companies with headquarters outside the U.S.  The World Equity Fund has yielded 4.16% since its inception on April 30, 2010.  This beats its benchmark, the S&P Global 1200 index, which yielded 3.23% over the same period.

    Opportunity Fund (AVESX)

    Their Opportunity Fund invests in companies of all capitalizations (small-cap, mid-cap, and large cap) for long-term capital appreciation.  Since inception in 2006, this fund has yielded 2.51% compared to the Russell 2000 yield of 0.48% and the S&P 600 small cap index yield of 1.28% over the same time.

    Growth Fund (AVEGX)

    The Ave Maria Growth Fund seeks long-term capital appreciation via growth stocks.  This fund has won the Lipper Fund Award twice: in 2009 for the three year period ending 12-31-2008 and again in 2011 for the five year period ending 12-31-2010.  The Lipper award was given for the best fund in the multi-cap core funds category.  The Growth Fund yielded 9.05% since its inception in 2003, compared to the S&P 500 yield of 5.57% over the same time. 



    Catholic Value Fund (AVEMX)

    This fund seeks long-term capital appreciation in equity investments.  The Catholic Values Fund has yielded 6.06% since its inception in 2001 vs. the S&P 500 yield of only 1.56% over the same period.  This fund invests in established companies of various market caps.

    Conclusion

    There are many good mutual fund choices here to combine solid market beating performance with beliefs that are consistent with Catholic teachings.  Investing in these funds is something that you can feel good about. They also offer a bond fund to diversify your portfolio.  If you would like more detailed information, visit their website avemariafunds.com.  

     



    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.
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