RJV Fund for Congregational Investing
Invest in Jewish values
RPB’s Reform Jewish Values Fund gives congregations the opportunity to invest their capital while working toward building a better world. As you may know, socially responsible investing (SRI) has become a widely utilized and often demanded investment approach. If you’re looking to diversify your congregation’s portfolio by including an SRI approach, consider the RJV Fund.
While there are many SRI fund options, the RJV Fund is the only one created by the Reform Movement to align with our specific values. We built the fund in partnership with Aperio Group—a research-based investment management firm and pioneer in designing custom portfolios, including SRI funds.
The RJV Fund is a globally diversified fund that invests in the stocks of large- and mid-cap companies located throughout all major regions of the world, including the United States. It’s a passive fund that tracks the MSCI All Country World Index, and its fee is among the lowest of commercially available SRI mutual funds.1
- The RJV Fund fee is among the lowest of ESG strategies managed in separate account vehicles, based on eVestment data of 73 managed ESG separately managed accounts.
RJV Fund at a glance
Long-term principal growth while reflecting Reform Jewish values priorities
A mix of stocks of large- and mid-capitalization companies located throughout all major regions of the world (all global developed and emerging markets)
Who should consider investing?
Congregational investors who want to make a social impact with their investments and have the ability to tolerate short- to medium-term fluctuations in principal due to adverse economic conditions
- The investment management fee is a blended rate based on the fund’s total pool of assets: 15 bps for the first $10 million in assets and 10 bps for assets over $10 million. For example, if the fund value is $20 million, the annualized fee is 12.5 bps. Congregations also pay an RPB Administration Fee (20 bps) and a Custody, Record Keeping, and Investment Consulting Fee (7 bps).
- As of 3/31/20.
RPB is committed to investing according to our Jewish values.
Our Jewish Values Investing Policy states how we integrate consideration of Jewish values into our entire investment selection process, while maintaining our paramount focus of fiduciary obligation as a pension fund.
Alignment of investments with values
The RJV Fund’s holdings are guided by the resolutions of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), Union for Reform Judaism (URJ), and the Commission on Social Action of Reform Judaism (CSA).
The fund uses the following investment screens to incorporate the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) priorities of the Reform Movement into the portfolio:
We avoid companies based on:
- Issue: Predatory lending, civilian firearms, and landmines and cluster munitions
- Industry: Tobacco and coal & consumable fuels
- Geography: Companies that conduct business with the Sudanese government, based on the principles outlined by the Sudan Divestment Task Force
We place greater emphasis on companies with:
- Better-performing environmental, social, and corporate governance practices
- Practices or businesses that have a positive impact on the environment
- Business ties to Israel
In addition to investment screens, we actively participate in shareholder proxy votes through Institutional Shareholder Services, a leader in SRI proxy voting. We also can join shareholder initiatives that promote change in corporate practices related to ESG issues through Aperio Group’s relationship with As You Sow.
The RJV Fund is an index fund that tracks its benchmark, the MSCI ACWI, a global index that captures large- and mid-cap stocks across 23 developed markets and 24 emerging markets. The index represents approximately 85% of the global equity investment opportunity set.
To achieve the alignment with Reform Jewish values, the RJV Fund’s holdings may differ from its benchmark. As such, returns are expected to be within plus or minus 2.5% of the benchmark performance approximately 90% of the time.
To view the RJV Fund’s most up-to-date performance information and other details, please view the fund fact sheet.
RJV Fund’s ESG profile vs. its benchmark4
- as of February 1, 2019
- The weighted-average RPB Social Score is specific to the MSCI ACWI
- Israel is a small percentage of the MSCI ACWI’s investable equity opportunity set.
- Beta is a measure of systematic or market risk. The market, or benchmark index, has a beta of 1.0. If a portfolio has a beta less than 1.0, then it has less sensitivity to market changes and is expected to appreciate less in up markets and depreciate less in down markets. Funds with a lower beta are considered to be more defensive, while funds with a higher beta are considered to be more aggressive than the market or benchmark.
- Standard deviation is a measure of how much an investment’s returns can vary from its average return. The greater the standard deviation, the greater the volatility of potential outcomes and overall risk. For example, a fund with a standard deviation of 10.0% is considered to be twice as volatile (risky) as a fund with a standard deviation of 5.0%.
- Tracking error measures the range of typical differences in return between a portfolio and its benchmark. As of inception, returns are expected to be plus or minus 2.16% of the benchmark performance approximately 90% of the time.
What are you for? What are you trying to promote? How do you encourage investments, whether it’s in Israel, or in companies in the U.S., or in other investments that will proactively help you realize your vision for a more just world.
- Jonah Pessner, Director, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism
Fund construction methodology
In partnership with Aperio Group, we created a values-aligned portfolio that reflects Reform Movement values using the following methodology:
RPB’s Values Task Force (with representatives from RPB, CCAR, URJ, and CSA) and Aperio interpreted and aligned CCAR, URJ, and CSA resolutions with currently available ESG criteria to create a values policy statement for RPB called a Social Profile.
Based on RPB’s Social Profile, we identified a desired Social Score for the fund that was better than the benchmark’s score and also met our financial risk requirements. The Social Score provides a basis for comparing our values-aligned portfolio to its benchmark, the MSCI ACWI.
Aperio used their proprietary model, along with our Social Profile and target Social Score, to select the fund’s securities and determine their relative weightings in the portfolio.
RPB’s Investment Committee reviewed the portfolio and financial risk metrics, and our board adopted the fund.
Because the fund may be impacted when additional resolutions are passed, the Investment Committee will continue to evaluate the fund and make changes to the screens and tilts as necessary.
Any URJ-affiliated congregation can invest in the RJV Fund. Talk to Michael Kimmel to learn more.
When you’re ready to get started, we’ve made it simple to open an investment account:
- Complete the Investment Account Agreement.
- Return the form, your initial investment, and documentation to RPB.
RPB requires a copy of a board resolution authorizing signers on the account along with the completed and signed form.
Your initial investment can be made by check or wire transfer. Contact Alyce Gunn for wire instructions. Please note that the minimum initial investment is $18,000.
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