A new initiative from Deutsche Bank (DB) seeks to limit investment in internet gambling in Germany. The bank has created a new Deutsche Bank Exchange Traded Fund (ETF), a.k.a. “db x-tracker”, for the publicly-mindful stock traders with Christian values. This is called the Stoxx Europe Christian Index ETF (DR). (“DR” stands for “Direct Replication” and ETFs so-indicated will use physical replication rather than swaps.)
The Stoxx Europe Christian Index ETF(DR) is the first ETF derived from the Stoxx Europe Christian Index. According to Hartmut Graf, Stoxx CEO, the fundamental index “offers a broad coverage of European companies that act in an ethically and environmentally conscious and socially responsible manner and thus are in line with Christian values.”
Stocks from the wider Stoxx Europe 600 index are selected for the Stoxx Europe Christian Index ETF(DR) on the basis of their alignment to the principles and values of the Christian faith. The requirements for the Christian index were set by an autonomous Christian belief commission. The regulations for the fund specifically prohibit investment in companies active in casinos, poker, and betting on sports in Germany.
It isn’t presently known whether this exclusion is dogmatic to the point of prohibiting charity gambling, which would ironically exclude church bingo halls if the church were ever to become a publicly traded company. German gambling laws are less strict for charitable gambling than for commercial gambling, but the commission on Christian faith which governs the Stoxx Europe Christian Index is unlikely to use law books instead of the Bible for making moral and ethical decisions.