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3 Investment Options for Religious People

Religion and finance are two topics that seem to be poles apart from each other. But we cannot forget that faith and money are two of the most important aspects of human life- so there has to be a connection somewhere. It doesn’t imply that churches issue bonds or stocks. But rather points to the fact that there are several investment options especially for the religious minded people. The article below offers a glimpse about 3 such options.

Catholic Superannuation account for retirement

There are Catholic Superannuation accounts especially for the people of Catholic faith. It’s a great long-term savings & investment plan for your retired days whose preparations start during your employment period. The Superannuation account consists of 3 elements-

  • The main element is government-age pension, supplemented by these two below

  • Compulsory contribution for superannuation account from employers for employee

  • Voluntary contribution for superannuation account from the employee

The balance of the super account would be invested in various assets like fixed interest, cash and shares. The positive ROI would add up to the account holder’s balance while the negative ROI would be deducted out. After retirement, the account holder has the option to withdraw the whole account balance in the form of a sizeable lump sum. Otherwise he can even convert the account balance into a steady income stream, termed as “allocated pension”.

Religion based bank accounts

The other option is investment in faith-based bank accounts. For example, if you Islamic bank accounts that run on the principles of Sharia law. Such bank accounts are especially for the followers of Islam religion – however, they cater to non-muslim populace as well. One of the best parts of these Islamic bank accounts is that these accounts don’t ask for minimum balance requirements from account holders. Moreover, these banks never charge transaction fees, unlike the traditional banks.

Akin to Islamic banks, there are Catholic banks as well that cater to Christian people of Catholic faith. One of the most important aspects of these banks is that they use the customers’ savings into building & developing churches. So, if you are a devout Catholic and looking forward to utilize your money into the betterment of your community- without compromising on the investment quotient-these Catholic savings accounts are the thing for you.

Socially Responsible Investing

SRI is a big word when we are discussing about religious-based investment options. Put simple, Socially Responsible Investing refers to an investment alternative which is “socially conscious”, “sustainable”, “green” and certainly “ethical”. More precisely, this type of investment implies investment in organizations that uphold moral and ethical values- such as human rights, consumer protection, safeguard of the environment and proper exercise and protection of religious beliefs. It also means proactively influencing the corporate decisions (as shareholders) which might otherwise abet detrimental effects on society.

The SRI aspect is followed by investment in bonds and stocks of those companies that foster actions beneficial for the society and fellow human beings. It also signifies avoidance of stocks of those companies that are involved in derogatory or offending actions. The definition of “offending actions” varies across religions but the list is almost the same with all the faiths.

Thus, you have protestant funds, Catholic funds, Islamic funds and so on.

Islamic funds are those that are structured according to Islamic principles which prohibit ownership of interest (riba) from investments. Besides, you should also know that investment in Islamic funds signify avoidance of sin stocks. It refers to stocks from companies which profit from gambling, porn and alcohol.

Protestant funds encourage investments in stocks from those companies which uphold – human dignity & value, a peaceful world devoid of violence, justice in society & environmental stewardship. Investment in protestant funds also includes promotion of causes like HIV/AIDS prevention, opposition to menacing predatory lending. Investment in protestant funds further signify avoidance of investment in companies engaged with tobacco, gambling, alcohol, abortion, porn and policies that are derogatory to ethical and moral values.

Investment in Catholic funds refers to investment in stocks of those companies that solemnly uphold the Catholic values. In this light, you can invest in organizations that are serious about environmental responsibility, human rights as well as fair employment policies. Investment in Catholic funds also mean evasion of those organizations that are avoided by other faith-based funds discussed above. Additionally, Catholic funds also uphold avoidance of those companies that extend domestic-partner benefits for same-sex or unmarried couples.

Thus, you see you have a solid list of options when you are planning for religious-based investments. Just make sure to proceed under the guidance of a financial investor.