Interesting, even if mostly superficial change. Capital has its own moral compass.
The WSJ reports:
The world’s largest money manager is stripping retailers that sell guns out of some current and planned exchange-traded funds, the latest sign that weapons sellers are facing the same scrutiny from investors as producers.
Walmart, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Kroger Co. are among the retailers that will be ruled out of new environmental social and governance-focused funds BlackRock Inc. is planning, a spokeswoman for the world’s largest asset manager said Thursday. The retailers were among those who said they would no longer sell guns to anyone under 21 in the wake of the school shooting in Parkland, Fla.
BlackRock plans to strip all gun sellers and retailers including Kroger from its current lineup of seven so-called ESG funds, which have some $2.2 billion in assets. Those products had minimal exposure to such firms.
It is also planning to offer new ETFs and pooled funds to 401(k) retirement savings plans that exclude gun makers and retailers. One of those ETFs will track the performance of a new bond index that is similar to the Bloomberg Barclays US Aggregate Bond Index, but excludes issuers that make 5% or more or $20 million in revenue from gun-related products.
(click here to continue reading BlackRock Plans to Block Walmart, Dick’s From Some Funds Over Guns – WSJ.)