San Jose, Calif., March 2, 2020 – Inspire Investing’s first two biblical ETFs, Inspire Global Hope ETF (NYSE: BLES) and Inspire Small Mid Cap Impact ETF (NYSE: ISMD), hit three years of trading last Thursday since their launch on the New York Stock Exchange on February 27, 2017.
Since their debut, Inspire has launched additional funds bringing the total to five ETFs under their management, the latest of which being the Inspire International ESG ETF trading under the ticker WWJD, gathering a total of $444.5M AUM in their family of ETFs.
Three years ago when we launched our first two ETFs, BLES and ISMD, a lot of people did not think we were going to make it,” says Robert Netzly, CEO of Inspire Investing. “The media ran stories postulating that there are not enough investors who believe in biblical values anymore to make funds like ours viable. Three years later, we’re still here and by God’s grace we have been very successful. Against some of the media’s assumptions, investors all over the world have supported the success of our funds and are aligning their investments to support the biblical values they hold dear. Every year that goes by provides more credibility that biblically responsible investing is a valuable investment approach that is serving a vast community of faith-based investors who have been left behind by Wall Street. I believe the best is yet to come.
The Inspire Global Hope ETF is a biblically responsible ESG (environmental, social and governance) ETF that invests on a global scale, searching out inspiring, biblically aligned large companies ($5B+ market cap) from both the U.S. and around the world, using the innovative Inspire Impact Score methodology to identify companies that are making a positive impact on the world and avoiding those acting at cross-currents to biblical values.
BLES is equally weighted, rebalanced quarterly and targets a geographic composition of 50% United States, 40% developed international and 10% emerging markets. The ETF seeks to deliver quality performance characteristics and to replicate investment results that generally correspond, before fees and expenses, to the performance of the Inspire Global Hope Index.
Since inception on February 27, 2017, the BLES annualized return was 9.61% on the NAV (net asset value) with a market price return of 9.63%, as of the end of the previous quarter. The one-year return as of the end of the previous quarter for BLES was 27.90% on the NAV, with a market price return of 28.35%. BLES trades on the New York Stock Exchange and had total net assets of $136.6M as of February 27th, 2020.
The Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact ETF is a biblically responsible ESG ETF that invests in inspiring, biblically aligned small-cap ($1-2B market cap) and mid-cap ($2-3.5B market cap) companies in the U.S., as determined by Inspire’s Impact Score methodology.
ISMD is equally weighted, rebalanced quarterly and targets a composition of 50% small cap and 50% mid cap companies covering a diverse array of sectors in the United States. The ETF seeks to replicate investment results that generally correspond, before fees and expenses, to the performance of the Inspire Small/Mid Cap Impact Index.
Since inception on February 27, 2017, the ISMD annualized return was 6.66% with a market price return of 6.69%, as of the end of the previous quarter. The one-year return as of the end of the previous quarter for ISMD was 24.43% on the NAV with a market price return of 24.79%. ISMD trades on the New York Stock Exchange and had total net assets of $85.2M as of February 27th, 2020.
The performance quoted represents past performance and does not guarantee future results. Investment return and principal value of an investment will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when sold or redeemed, may be worth more or less than the original cost. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted. Performance data current to the most recent month end may be obtained by visiting www.inspireETF.com. Total annual operating expenses are 0.62% and 0.72% for (BLES) and (ISMD), respectively.
Inspire’s commitment to supporting biblical values such as pro-life, traditional marriage and ending human trafficking with their investment offerings seems to resonate with investors across the globe.
In just three years, Inspire has managed to gather over $444M Assets Under Management (AUM) across all five of their ETFs, as of February 27th, 2020. Inspire Investing’s discretionary AUM grew 152% in 2019, bringing total assets to $634.5M as of December 31st, 2019. This incredible growth follows Inspire being recognized as the 8th fastest growing registered investment advisor (RIA) firm in the nation in 2018 with AUM growth of 92.43%, according to Financial Advisor Magazine’s “Top 50 Fastest Growing RIAs” annual report.
Inspire has also been able to create meaningful impact in the lives of people across the globe thanks to the institutions, investors, and advisors using Inspire ETFs. Through the ministry partners of Inspire’s Give50 campaign, where Inspire donates 50% or more of their corporate net profits generated from management fees, they have been able to facilitate Bible distribution, aid in natural disaster relief, build clean water wells, provide support for pro-life counseling, build a church in Guatemala, and more. You can learn more about Inspire’s Give50 campaign at www.inspireinvesting.com/impact/.
Important Risk Information: Inspire, the adviser, provides the index for the Inspire Funds to track. The indexes use software that analyzes publicly available data relating to the primary business activities, products and services, philanthropy, legal activities, policies and practices when assigning Inspire Impact Scores to a company. The securities with the highest Inspire Impact Scores are included in the Indexes and are equally weighted. As the Fund may not fully replicate the Index, it is subject to the risk that investment management strategy may not produce the intended results.
Past performance is no guarantee that the Funds will achieve their objective, generate positive returns, or avoid losses.
Securities in the Index or in the Fund’s portfolio may underperform in comparison to the general securities markets or other asset classes. The Fund may focus its investments in securities of a particular industry to the extent the Index does. This may cause the Fund’s net asset value to fluctuate more than that of a fund that does not focus in a particular industry. Fluctuations in the value of equity securities held by the Fund will cause the net asset value (“NAV”) of the Fund to fluctuate.
Investments in foreign securities could subject the Fund to greater risks including currency fluctuation, economic conditions, and different governmental and accounting standards.
The Fund is not actively managed and the Adviser will not sell shares of an equity security due to current or projected underperformance of a security, industry or sector, unless that security is removed from the Index or the selling of shares of that security is otherwise required upon a rebalancing of the Index as addressed in the Index methodology. Tracking error may occur because of imperfect correlation between the Fund’s holdings of portfolio securities and those in the Index. The Fund’s use of a representative sampling approach, if used, could result in its holding a smaller number of securities than are in the Index. To the extent the assets in the Fund are smaller, these risks will be greater.
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