More than 160,000 pastors, church staff members, hospital employees and others have their retirement dollars with GuideStone Financial Resources. The majority of those dollars are invested in GuideStone Funds, the nation’s largest Christian-based, socially screened, registered mutual fund company.
Launched in 2001, the fund family was recently recognized by industry ranking firm Lipper as the 2012 Best Overall Small Fund Group in the U.S., an award that honors one mutual fund company that has up to $40 billion in assets. As the first Christian-based mutual fund group to win Lipper’s top trophy, GuideStone was ranked No. 1 out of 182 eligible companies.
“The Lipper trophy recognizes a standard of excellence that we pursue each day as we seek to honor the Lord and enable our faithful participants to invest according to their biblical principles,” said O.S. Hawkins, president of GuideStone Financial Resources. Hawkins was among four GuideStone senior staff members who accepted the Lipper trophy at a March 8 dinner in New York City sponsored by The Wall Street Journal, Thomson Reuters and Investment News.
As a ministry, GuideStone seeks to honor the Lord by striving to use the best business and intellectual capital available to manage participants’ investment dollars. GuideStone Capital Management uses a multi-manager, multi-style investment approach that allows GuideStone participants to access a global opportunity set, and create an investment portfolio that fits their risk tolerance and time horizon.
“Our investment structure is built for the long-term,” said Rodric E. Cummins, senior vice president and chief investment officer for GuideStone Capital Management. “It is designed to provide thoughtful, high-quality, strategic investment options to our participants, and is executed by what we believe are world-class investment management firms.”
The recent accolade, Cummins continued, demonstrates GuideStone’s unyielding commitment to excellence in every aspect of the organization. As important as the funds’ Christian screening is, the award recognizes the fund performance for the three-years ending Nov. 30, 2011, for its consistently strong risk-adjusted return. Investors are reminded that mutual fund investing involves risk, including loss of principal. Keep in mind, as with all mutual fund investing, past performance is no guarantee of future results.
The award recognizes that social screening and performance are not mutually exclusive.
“When it comes to investment performance, you are evaluated every day,” said Patty A. Weiland, senior vice president and chief operating officer of GuideStone Capital Management, the investment adviser to GuideStone Funds. “The rating firms don’t make any exceptions because of our social screening policy. We have to compete day in and day out with our investment performance. That’s what Lipper recognized, with no allowance for companies we exclude. We either meet, and beat our peers, or we don’t. Lipper’s report indicated we were the best out of more than 180 eligible fund companies. We are proud of this accomplishment.”
As a ministry first and foremost, GuideStone reaches out to its participants with free investment advice through GPS: Guided Planning Services, provided by GuideStone Advisors, a controlled-affiliate of GuideStone Financial Resources. The service provides specific investment advice, including how much to invest and in which funds to invest. Employees understand the unique needs of churches and ministries, and their employees.
“We believe these recognitions continue to demonstrate that one does not have to yield his biblical convictions to achieve excellence in investment performance that is recognized across the mutual fund industry,” Cummins said. “This serves as a testament to the hard work of the GuideStone Capital Management team and the manager-of-managers approach we use to oversee the funds on a daily basis.
“The Lipper award is a very meaningful accomplishment professionally for our team. We are thankful to be recognized for the work our investment team carries out on behalf of our valued participants every single day.”
Potential investors should carefully consider the investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses of the GuideStone Funds before investing. A prospectus with this and other information about the Funds may be obtained by calling 888/98-GUIDE (888/984-8433) or download one at www.GuideStone.org. It should be read carefully before investing.
GuideStone Funds shares are distributed by BNY Mellon Distributors LLC, not an advisor affiliate.
About the Best Overall Small Company Lipper Award: GuideStone Funds ranked No. 1 out of 182 eligible companies in the small company category. All rankings are as of Nov. 30, 2011. To be considered for the Small Company Lipper award, companies must have at least three distinct portfolios in each of the following asset classes—equity, bond or mixed-asset as well as at least 36 months of performance history as of the end of the calendar year of the respective evaluation year. The overall group award is given to the group with the lowest average decile ranking for Lipper’s Consistent Return measure of its respective asset class results over the three-year period.
In cases of identical results, the lower average percentile rank will determine the winner. Lipper, a wholly owned subsidiary of Reuters, is a leading global provider of mutual fund information and analysis to fund companies, financial intermediaries and media organizations. ©2011 Lipper a subsidiary of Thomson Reuters.