Faculty in the News: ‘Faith-based’ financial investing and crimes against the homeless

Faculty in the News: ‘Faith-based’ financial investing and crimes against the homeless

Faculty and Staff, News Releases 0 Comment 63

An article on “faith-based” investing by The New York Times cited the work of Greg Richey, who lectures on finance at California State University, San Bernardino.

Richey developed a portfolio of 65 “sin stocks” and tracked them from 1996 to 2016, finding an average annual return of 11 percent, the newspaper reported. Once taking variables such as litigation and boycott risk into account, the gains disappear, he said. Also, “the definition of vice keeps changing.”

The article focused on two new exchange traded funds that offer a conservative evangelical Christian — what is called “biblically responsible” — tilt to an investing approach. The funds explicitly say in their regulatory filing that they will avoid buying shares in companies that have “any degree of participation in activities that do not align with biblical values,” including what they call the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender “lifestyle.”

The article, published Feb. 28, 2017, may be read at “As funds invoke Bible values, others see intolerance.”

Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at CSUSB, was interviewed by the United Kingdom newspaper The Guardian for an article about violence against the homeless — in this case, two homeless men who were murdered in Las Vegas this year.

Levin believes these sorts of crimes are linked to derisive portrayals of homelessness in pop culture and viral videos such as “Bumfights,” in which homeless men are paid to brawl. “They’re attacked not just because of bias but because they’re vulnerable,” he noted.

Such acts directed against homeless people are not uncommon, the newspaper reported. There were 27 fatal attacks on homeless individuals in 2015, according to the National Coalition for the Homeless, which also documented a total of 1,650 acts of violence against homeless individuals by housed perpetrators between 1999 and 2015, largely by men in their teens and 20s.

The article, published March 7, 2017, may be read at “Mannequin sting catches suspect in Las Vegas homeless murders.”


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