Some Pension Funds Reconsider Gun Firm Investments

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 Soaring gun sales since 2009 have made the stocks of firearms manufacturers a sound investment, but an increasing number of public pension fund managers are questioning the morality of the investments in light of mass-shooting atrocities, which often cause gun sales spikes, reports The Atlantic’s CityLab. While some have called for public and private divestment in guns and ammo manufacturers, private funds aren’t listening: Since President Obama’s inauguration in 2009, mutual-fund investments in the top two publicly traded gun companies have grown from $30 million to more than $500 million.

More than 150 mutual funds own shares in Smith & Wesson Holding Corp., up three-fold since the end of 2008. The efforts by Campaign to Unload and other organizations to get these funds to drop weapons companies (or to get consumers to drop these funds) haven’t found much traction. Divestment by massive city and state pension funds ought to be a simpler matter. Yet public divestment in guns and ammo companies has proven to be a lengthy and difficult process, even in places like New York City where gun-stock divestment is favored by leaders.

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