investing

This Fund Beats the Market Via Faith-Based Rules

You won't find tobacco, alcohol or gambling companies in the Eventide Gilead Fund. That's because Christian principles guides the fund's stock selection.

You won’t find tobacco, alcohol or gambling companies in the Eventide Gilead Fund (ETGLX). That’s because faith—specifically, Christian principles as they apply to business—guides the fund’s stock selection. “We invest in companies that excel in creating positive social value,” says lead manager Finny Kuruvilla. The approach gets results: Since Eventide’s mid-2008 launch, it has earned 17.5% annualized, beating the typical midsize-company growth fund by an average of 8 percentage points per year.

At Eventide, earnings and other financial measures matter less than whether a company operates with integrity. That said, this fund isn’t dowdy. Kuruvilla and co-manager David Barksdale have owned shares in Tesla Motors, the electric-car maker, since 2011 (the stock, though weak lately, has climbed 276% over the past year). Kuruvilla, a doctor by training, likes biotech firms because their success isn’t strongly intertwined with the overall economy. The fund’s top holding at last report was Acadia Therapeutics, which has skyrocketed 348% over the past year.

Though Morningstar considers Eventide a midsize-company fund, it can invest in businesses of any size. At last report, half of its assets were invested in small-company stocks, 32% in midsize firms and 18% in large concerns. The fund’s no-load Class N shares are available at Fidelity and TD Ameritrade, among other brokers, with no transaction fee.

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