Merrill Lynch Community Development Company Invests $10 Million to Provide a Boost to International Microfinancing Through Calvert Foundation.Initiative designated as Clinton Global Initiative this week at Annual Meeting
NEW YORK New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of & BETHESDA, Md. -- In an effort to mainstream microfinance and community investing, Merrill Lynch Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. (NYSE: MER TYO: 8675 ), through its subsidiaries and affiliates, provides capital markets services, investment banking and advisory services, wealth management, asset management, insurance, banking and related products and services on a global basis. Community Development Company (MLCDC MLCDC Merrill Lynch Community Development Company ) has invested $10 million in Calvert Foundation's Community Investment Note, a fixed income investment product that allows individual and institutional investors Institutional Investor
A non-bank person or organization that trades securities in large enough share quantities or dollar amounts that they qualify for preferential treatment and lower commissions. to support economically disadvantaged communities around the world. The investment will be targeted to provide particular support to women entrepreneurs in developing countries, where microloans as little as $100 can enable impoverished women to start their own businesses and work their way up the economic ladder.
The initiative was designated as a Clinton Global Initiative at its Annual Meeting this week in New York, where heads of state, business executives, heads of nonprofit organizations Nonprofit Organization
An association that is given tax-free status. Donations to a non-profit organization are often tax deductible as well.
Examples of non-profit organizations are charities, hospitals and schools. and foundations, and scholars are meeting to discuss energy and climate change, global health, education, and poverty.
Currently, Calvert Community Investment Notes have $160 million in investment capital outstanding to a wide and growing range of affordable housing, small businesses in low-income areas, and microenterprises.
The MLCDC investment will provide financing to approximately twenty microfinance organizations that are expected to provide microloans to more than 25,000 women entrepreneurs around the world. Organizations such as Adhikar in India, Lift Above Poverty Organisation (LAPO LAPO Lift Above Poverty Organization (Nigeria)
LAPO Lake Afton Public Observatory (Wichita State University, Kansas)
LAPO Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra (California) ) in Nigeria, Kenya Women Finance Trust (KWFT KWFT Kenya Women Finance Trust ) in Kenya, Pro Mujer Pro Mujer (meaning, in Spanish, Pro Woman) is an organization aimed at improving the life conditions in Latin America, primarily though Microcredit programs. According to their website, their mission of Bolivia and Mexico, and Women's World Banking Women's World Banking (WWB) is a non-profit organization, based in New York, whose mission is to expand the economic assets, participation and power of low-income women entrepreneurs by helping them access financial services and information. in Colombia, through a combination of microfinance, business training and healthcare support, will enable the regions' poorest women to build livelihoods for themselves and futures for their families.
Merrill Lynch President and Chief Operating Officer Chief Operating Officer (COO)
The officer of a firm responsible for day-to-day management, usually the president or an executive vice-president. Gregory J. Fleming said: "This investment is part of our firm's commitment to help improve the lives of women and their families which is essential to the growth of sustainable economies in the developing world."
"We are delighted by this opportunity to deepen our relationship with Merrill Lynch, which has been an investment world leader in recognizing the growing importance of community investing," said Calvert Foundation Organization Information
Calvert Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization specializing in Community Investment, and has operated for over ten years. Calvert Foundation utilizes investment capital, rather than conventional philanthropy, to create a model that enables president and chief executive officer Shari Berenbach.
Access to financial services The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.
Please [ improve this article] or discuss the issue on the talk page. is critical in these targeted regions where economic and social stagnation Stagnation
A period of little or no growth in the economy. Economic growth of less than 2-3% is considered stagnation. Sometimes used to describe low trading volume or inactive trading in securities.
A good example of stagnation was the U.S. economy in the 1970s. of women and girls occur. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. the United Nations Development Program, a mere four percent of the population in rural Africa has access to bank accounts and only one percent has obtained loans or other forms of credit from formal financial institutions. Women are the large majority of microfinance loan borrowers, with extremely high repayment rates.
Dona Auxiliadora Soza is a single mother of five children who had the terrible experience of having her first business fail. However, with an initial $250 loan from FUNDESER in Nicaragua, she was able to grow a business, initially selling cheese on the outskirts of the Diriamba market, then adding new products such as makeup and clothing. Following an excellent track record of ten loans and a strategy of saving while investing, today she owns a prosperous store and holds a loan of $1,600. Dona Auxiliadora Soza is well towards her goal for all her children to be successful professionals. She paid for the schooling of all five of her children, now 30, 26, 22, 20 and 19 years old. The two eldest are professionals and the others are students in college.
Last year Merrill Lynch and Calvert Foundation entered into an agreement in US investments to offer the Community Investment Notes for sale to Merrill Lynch clients who are interested in creating new economic opportunities in underserved communities in the U.S. and abroad, resulting in over $1.5 million being put to work in communities in the initial months of Note sales. As part of this 2007 commitment, Merrill Lynch invests alongside its clients by matching up to ten percent of the Community Investment Notes sold by its advisors in the form of risk protection built into the Notes, providing security to their own investors in the unlikely event of a loss.
"Merrill Lynch cares deeply about its investors and their assets," said Merrill Lynch Community Development Company president Terri Ludwig. "This arrangement allows us to support both our investors and their commitment to fighting poverty through community investment."
If current industry growth patterns continue, more investors will be adding community investments such as the Community Investment Note to their portfolios. According to the Social Investment Forum, community investment assets in the U.S. have grown six fold the last 12 years and reached $25 billion in 2007.
ABOUT CALVERT FOUNDATION
For over 12 years, Calvert Social Investment Foundation, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, has worked to make community investment a safe and logical option for all investors seeking to make a positive social impact. To make community investment accessible to a wider audience, Calvert Foundation has removed critical barriers by creating investment products that blend both financial and social returns. With more than $200 million in assets, Calvert Foundation focuses on using investment capital, rather than conventional philanthropy, to create a sustainable, scalable model that enables nonprofit organizations, microfinance institutions and social enterprises to address critical social problems. For more information, see www.calvertfoundation.org.
ABOUT MERRILL LYNCH COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMPANY
Capital for this program was financed by the Merrill Lynch Community Development Company (MLCDC), which provides financing solutions and support to underserved communities. Leveraging Merrill Lynch's intellectual and financial capital, MLCDC establishes strategic partnerships with community leaders to develop projects that benefit low- and moderate-income areas and individuals. While its activities are national in scope, MLCDC concentrates its efforts in communities in California, New Jersey, New York and Utah.
Merrill Lynch established MLCDC in 2001 as a community development investment bank to conduct business on behalf of Merrill Lynch's two domestic banks. In addition to providing financial products and services to address important community development issues, MLCDC's work fulfills the banks' community reinvestment Reinvestment
Using dividends, interest and capital gains earned in an investment or mutual fund to purchase additional shares or units, rather than receiving the distributions in cash.
1. In terms of stocks, it is the reinvestment of dividends to purchase additional shares. goals under the Federal Community Reinvestment Act Community Reinvestment Act (CRA)
Enacted by Congress in 1977, the CRA encourages banks to help meet the credit needs of their communities for housing and other purposes, particularly in neighborhoods with low or moderate incomes, while maintaining safe and sound operations. (CRA See Community Reinvestment Act. ).
MLCDC looks for lending, investment and program development opportunities and seeks collaborative partnerships with governmental and quasi-governmental entities, non-profit and for-profit intermediaries and other financial institutions in a broad range of community development activities. For more information, please visit http://www.ml.com/?id=7695_8134_13653_71392
Editor's Note Editor's Note (foaled in 1993 in Kentucky) is an American thoroughbred Stallion racehorse. He was sired by 1992 U.S. Champion 2 YO Colt Forty Niner, who in turn was a son of Champion sire Mr. Prospector and out of the mare, Beware Of The Cat.
Trained by D. : Calvert Foundation is a separate entity from Calvert Group Ltd. and its products should not be confused with any Calvert Group-sponsored investment product. In order to avoid confusion and be consistent when referring to Calvert Foundation in print news stories, always use "Calvert Foundation" as opposed to "Calvert" in headlines and subheads.