Firearms Divestment in the US
categories: ESG Products & Services, Responsible Investing, Research Paper, general
Following the Sandy Hook tragedy, calls are mounting for US institutional investors to sever their ties with the firearms industry.
On January 9, the California State Teachers' Retirement System (CalSTRS) Investment Committee announced that it would begin divesting from firearms companies that manufacture weapons that are illegal in California. Similar investment bans have been adopted in New York City and Chicago. Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter has issued a call through the US Conference of Mayors for adoption of the 'Sandy Hook Principles,' modeled after the Sullivan principles to end apartheid in South Africa.
What are the choices and investment implications for investors weighing restrictions on firearms companies? Do divestment policies extend beyond makers of semi-automatic weapons to include other firearms manufacturers, ammunition suppliers and firearms retailers? Will this campaign spread to banks that provide financing to firearms companies?