Philadelphia pension fund adopts gun investment principles

Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement on Thursday approved a resolution to adopt Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter's Sandy Hook Principles for gun and ammunition companies, as a result of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting on Dec. 14.

The objective of the Sandy Hook Principles is to “influence the corporate behavior of gun and ammunition manufacturers, distributors and retailers by establishing baseline standards for responsible conduct. The principles address five specific categories of reform in terms of procedures, coordination management, safety and technology,” according to a news release from the mayor's office.

The $4.2 billion pension fund's resolution gives those companies 90 days to sign the Sandy Hook Principles. If a company does not sign the principles, the resolution states “at least 50% of assets under management with that company will be removed by nine months and 100% of assets removed within 15 months.”

Executive Director Francis X. Bielli wrote in an e-mail that the pension fund holds about $8.6 million in gun and ammunition manufacturers, distributors and retailers. The companies are Alliant Techsystems, Cabela's, Compagnie Financiere Richemont, Daicel, Dick's Sporting Goods, Olin, Sears Holding, Smith & Wesson Holdings, Sturm Ruger & Co., and Wal-Mart Stores.

The board will update compliant and non-compliant lists on a quarterly basis.