BNY files for Women’s Empowerment ETF

Subadviser Newton Investment Management screens and selects companies


BNY Mellon is readying an ETF aiming to invest in companies that help improve the quality of life for women, according to a regulatory filing made last week.

The BNY Mellon Women’s Empowerment ETF will focus on holdings that support “the process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one’s life and claiming one’s rights.” Such companies show dedication to gender equity in the workplace or have products or services that “contribute to the ability of women to meet daily life needs, thereby promoting their productivity,” the firm stated in an initial prospectus filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The subadviser for that fund, BNY subsidiary Newton Investment Management North America, initially screens potential investments based on qualitative and quantitative metrics around women’s empowerment. That includes representation of women across companies’ organizational structures, demonstrated commitments to gender equality and the availability of workplace benefits such as paid family leave and flexible work arrangements.

Newton gives a score to companies, selecting those for further consideration if they are in the top 50% of their peer group. It can also include companies that help support “the ability of women to meet daily life needs,” such as those that provide meal delivery, childcare, eldercare, breast milk substitute, employment placing or employment training.

After that screening, the subadviser picks companies with promising financial characteristics, according to the filing.

Portfolio managers on the forthcoming ETF are Newton’s head of sustainable equities, Julianne McHugh, and senior portfolio manager Karen Behr.

Expense information for the ETF was not included in the filing.

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