Credit Suisse launches first-ever LGBT equality index and portfolio

Credit Suisse initiated the first index to track the fiscal performance of LGBT friendly companies. In addition to the new LGBT index, Credit Suisse will have LGBT Equality Portfolio for investors. The WSJ press release: The Credit Suisse LGBT Equality Index(TM) is a capitalization-weighted equity index that measures the performance of US companies recognized for supporting and promoting equality for members of the LGBT community 

Ashley Kindergan at the Financialist explains how was it designed:

“We believe that companies that engage in and have good top-level policies regarding LGBT employees should see a positive bottom-line economic impact as a result,” said Eric Berger, a Relationship Manager for Credit Suisse’s Private Banking USA business and a member of the firm’s LGBT Network, which played a critical role in the product’s development over the course of the last two years...

To design the product, Nicole Douillet, a trader at Credit Suisse who is also the co-chair of the LGBT Network, first put together a market capitalization-weighted index of LGBT-friendly companies based on the HRC’s corporate ranking. In its current iteration, the non-tradable Credit Suisse LGBT Equality Index consists of about 200 companies with a score of 80 or above on the HRC’s Corporate Equality scorecard. All but a few are in the S&P 500.

The next step was to create an investable, optimized instrument. To that end, Credit Suisse’s HOLT team—which evaluates individual companies for clients ranging from hedge funds to wealth managers—selected from a list of LGBT-friendly companies with a score of 80 or above the stocks that they believe are good investment ideas based on more traditional measures.

Go to Towleroad for the complete story.